Ambient sound/noise

 Background noise level.

Attended monitoring

 Measuring noise using a hand held noise monitor.


Gradual loss in intensity of any kind through a medium, such as insulation (opposite of amplification). MTW fits its heavy mobile equipment with sound suppression materials such as mufflers and engine insulation. This is known as noise attenuation.

Community Consultative Committee (CCC)

Each of our Hunter Valley operations have Community Consultative Committees (CCC) who meet on a regular basis. CCCs provide a forum for open discussion between representatives of our mines, the community, local council and other stakeholders on issues directly relating to our operations, environmental performance and community relations, and to keep the community informed on these matters. It is a condition of our mine consents to operate CCCs.  

Community Response Officer (CRO)

A member of the mine operations team who undertakes monitoring at various locations in the vicinity of MTW using hand held monitors. They validate real time noise and dust alarms, inspect lighting from the mine and communicate with the shift coordinator (or OCE) to help them to make changes to mining operations if criteria is exceeded. CROs are also responsible for receiving, responding to and recording details of community complaints.

Development Consent

Authorisation granted by the Minister for Resources and Energy under the Mining Act 1992 to prospect, explore or mine. Before a mining lease can be granted, development consent must be obtained under the Environmental Planning & Assessment Act 1979.

Development consent fo rthe Warkworth Continuation Project and Mount Thorley Operations 2015 Project (SSD-6464 and SSD-6465 respectively) was granted on 26 November 2015.

Decibels or dB(A)

Noise level measurement units are decibels (dB). The “A” weighting scale is used to describe human response to noise.


Follows the frequency sensitivity of the human ear at very high noise levels. The "C" weighting scale includes much more of the low-frequency range of sounds than the "A" scale.

NSW Environmental Protection Authority (EPA)

Primary environmental regulator for NSW.

Environmental Planning & Assessment Act 1979 (EP&A Act 1979)

Legislation that provides a system of environmental planning assessment for NSW.

Exceedance for noise

Noise level attributed to MTW (either Mount Thorley or Warkworth), measured during attended monitoring, which is in excess of a consent noise limit.


The average noise energy during a measurement period.


The level exceeded for 90% of the time, which is approximately the average of the minimum noise levels. The LA90 level is often referred to as the ‘background’ noise level and is commonly used to determine noise criteria for assessment purposes.

Management Controls

Actions or controls at site are taken are commensurate with the nature and severity of the noise issue.

Routine controls to manage noise and dust typically include attenuated haul trucks on high noise risk haul runs, water carts in operation throughout shift, visual inspections and hand held monitoring conducted by CRO’s, all operators and supervisors monitoring dust.

Minor operational changes to reduce environmental impact include repositioning of a lighting plant, changing a haul route, changing the fleet type being used in an area, or reducing the amount of haul fleet being used.

Major operational changes to reduce environmental impacts include changing or closing down dump areas, shutting down heavy mining equipment, or closing a pit altogether.


Mount Thorley Operations, located to the south of Warkworth Mine, and north of Glencore operated mine Bulga Coal. Development Consent for the Mount Thorley Operations 2015 Project was granted on 26 November 2015 (SSD-6465).


Mount Thorley Industrial Estate (location of one of MTW's air quality monitoring units).

Non-compliance for noise

Exceedance measured during applicable meteorological conditions, which is greater than 2dB above the relevant consent noise limit.


Project Specific Noise Level in accordance with the NSW Industrial Noise Policy.


Particulate matter or particles less than 10 microns in diameter.

Sound Power Level

10 times the logarithm of energy radiated from a source (as noise) divided by a reference power, the reference power being 1 picowatt.


TEOM stands for 'Tapered Element Oscillating Microbalance' - A real-time air quality (particulate) monitoring device. MTW operates a network of PM10 TEOM's to measure and report on air quality conditions in surrounding community areas.


Total Suspended Particulate refers to the total of all particles suspended in the air.


Upper Hunter Air Quality Monitoring Network. Visit


Warkworth Mining Limited. Warkworth Mine is located to the north of Mount Thorley Operations. Development Consent for the Warkworth Continuation Project (SSD-6464) was granted on 26 November 2015.