Air Management
 
Alcoa Point Henry monitors and reports on a range of emissions to air including fluoride, dust and particulate, greenhouse gases and sulphur dioxide. The Environmental Improvement Plan outlines Alcoa Point Henry’s approach and strategy for management of emissions to air. 
 
 
Significant Investments and Achievements
 
Bakes Sustainability Project
Alcoa Point Henry’s $89 million carbon bake upgrade was commissioned in late 2007.
 
The project marked a key milestone for the ongoing sustainability of Alcoa's Point Henry operations and is one of the most significant investments by the company in Victoria for over 15 years. The upgrade has helped maintain production levels and significantly improved environmental performance.
 
The project has delivered significant reductions by optimising combustion efficiency during the carbon bake anode process. 
 
The fume treatment centre called the carbon bake scrubber was also upgraded as part of the project.  The new scrubber now provides more capacity to enable major maintenance to be carried out over the life of the rebuilt furnace, without having to take the whole scrubber offline.  The end result has seen large scale reductions in particulates and PAHs exiting the scrubber.
 
Greenmill Fume System Upgrade
The upgrade of the smelter’s Greenmill Fume System was commissioned in September 2011. The new system collects all the emissions from the Green Mill process, filtering them, before returning the material back into the process.
 
The $16 million project was managed in partnership with Worley Parsons and Denieli Corus.

The system continues to improve our environmental performance and ensures we remain an environmental benchmark for other smelters around the world. The upgrade meets the environmental performance obligation under the State Environment Protection Policy (SEPP) of “maximum extent achievable” for class 3 emissions from green mills in an aluminium smelter.

It plays an important role in continuing to reduce emissions as well as helping to ensure we stay globally competitive.
 
Sulphur Dioxide Management Upgrade
As part of ongoing environmental improvement plans, the smelter’s fume system will be upgraded in line with Alcoa’s broader sulphur dioxide management strategy. The Sulphur Dioxide Management Project will improve sulphur dioxide ground level concentrations in and around the Point Henry Smelter and support the sustainability of our operations.  It follows the site’s voluntary reduction in emission limits of sulphur dioxide in 2004. The project involves Alcoa increasing the height of discharge points via two tall stacks.  Works commenced in 2010 with the project due for completion in 2013.  
Progress update - July 2013
Following the completion of the ‘Point Henry smelter review’ in June 2012, Alcoa developed new timelines for the implementation of the project. In line with EPA requirements, Alcoa is has developed a management plan for the interim period. In June 2013 Alcoa submitted an update to the EPA which will be presented to the Community Advisory Board in August.
 
Fluoride Reductions
Since 2002 fluoride emissions have reduced by more than 75% at Point Henry.  Focused operational practices such as pot coverage and draft optimisation ensure fluoride is extracted effectively to the fume scrubbing system. 
 
The implementation of real time lasers costing $800,000 is also a valuable technique to instantaneously monitor fluoride levels in the Potrooms.

The new scrubber located at the carbon bake

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The fume treatment centre, called the carbon bake scrubber, was upgraded in 2007 as part of the $89million carbon bake upgrade and has led to large scale reductions in particulates and PAHs exiting the scrubber.

Signal Station, Koori Plant Walk & Wetlands

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As part of ‘Moolapio’ and the Bakes Sustainability Project, Alcoa reconstructed the public area that provides a gateway to Point Henry including the Signal Station, Koori Plant Walk and three hectares of wetlands.