Awards highlight quarry industry?s EHS commitment

New South Wales is the third state to announce its Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) Award winners for 2015.

The awards were presented on 24 July in Sydney at the state’s Construction Materials Industry Dinner, which is hosted annually by the peak body for the construction materials industry, Cement Concrete Aggregates Australia (CCAA).

The two main awards were claimed by two separate divisions of major building materials supplier Boral.

The Health and Safety Innovation Award was presented to Boral Construction Materials for the autonomous inspection unit developed at its Seaham quarry. Concerned about the occupational risks associated with screen and chute inspection, the Seaham quarry team adapted a remote-controlled vehicle to include a compact video camera. This unit was used to undertake inspections in place of staff, eliminating personnel safety risks, improving visual quality, halving inspection times and allowing the quarry to record and store footage.

Boral Cement won the Environmental Innovation Award for its efforts to improve the performance of its Marulan lime kiln. The kiln had been emitting a high amount of particulate due to an inefficient bag filter, which resulted in the operation being put on notice by the state environmental regulator. By strategically relocating the water spray system to reduce the temperature of the gas and re-engineering the kiln’s divider wall to ease airflow, the team was able to reduce emissions by almost 90 per cent.

Boral Cement also took the award for Environmental Best Performance for the rehabilitation works undertaken at its Berrima site.

Boral Cement environmental manager Aleksandra Wnorowski told Quarry that winning these two awards was a great recognition of Boral’s commitment to environmental excellence and zero harm to the environment.

“The Marulan kiln bag filter project has demonstrated that application of scientific analysis (computational flow dynamics) to equipment improvements can result in superior efficiency and reduction in maintenance at a fraction of the equipment replacement cost,” she added.

Inspiring change

In addition to Boral, a number of other companies were recognised on the night, including Holcim Australia, which won the Health and Safety Best Performance – Concrete Award for the concrete safety management system it implemented at its Mitchell concrete plant. Holcim also received a high commendation in the Environmental Best Performance category for the automated flocculent system it developed for its Bungendore sand quarry.

Hanson Construction Materials won the Health and Safety Best Performance – Extractive Award for its site-specific electrical control and management plan. Hy-Tec also received a high commendation in the Health and Safety Innovation category for adopting a custom-made kibble to improve the ergonomics of cone crusher lubrication at its Austen quarry.

Todd Hacking, CCAA’s NSW director, said the calibre of the 33 nominations received this year had been inspiring.

“Hopefully, they will motivate the broader industry to investigate whether they too can make simple, cost-effective changes within their businesses in order to improve environmental performance and health and safety outcomes,” he added.

The NSW winners of the Environmental Innovation and Health and Safety Innovation Awards will be considered for the CCAA’s biennial national awards, which will be presented at the Construction Materials Industry Conference in Melbourne next year.

The winners


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Quarry businesses recognised for EHS innovation

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