Air Quality Management The management of air quality from Alcoa’s Wagerup refinery receives close community and government scrutiny and we are committed to ongoing improvement in this area. In recent years Alcoa has worked with scientists from the DoE, Chemistry Centre of Western Australia (CCWA), the CSIRO and community representatives to better understand and manage air quality at Wagerup. This work has contributed to a number of successful emission reductions projects which have resulted in significant improvements in key areas. Outcomes of detailed monitoring and modelling work conducted in 2005 show the air quality around the Wagerup refinery is typical of a rural Australian environment in terms of the nature and quantity of chemicals found. It also found the refinery contributes only a small amount of chemical compounds to local air.
Noise Management Noise from Wagerup Refinery is recognised as a potential impact on residents living close to the refinery and is therefore a priority area of environmental management. From 1999-2001 a noise reduction program at the refinery reduced night-time noise levels five decibels. Despite this, noise monitoring and modelling showed that refinery noise still exceeded night-time assigned noise levels at some private residences under weather conditions most conducive to noise propagation.
Variation to assigned noise levels In 2013 the Minister for Environment granted Wagerup refinery a variation to the assigned noise levels under Regulation 17 of the Environmental Protection (Noise) Regulations 1997. Regulation 17 recognises some facilities constructed before the noise regulations were introduced might not be able to comply with the new and more stringent noise levels through reasonable and practicable measures. Noise monitoring undertaken as a requirement of the variation shows that refinery noise emissions during 2014 and 2015 were demonstrably lower than those recorded at the same locations during 2002 and 2003.