Bag houses and other fugitive dust abatement led to an 11-year low in lead emissions last year as well as the first quarter of 2016.
“Lead is continuing to show a steady decline at the Butler Park Station,” says Trail Mayor Mike Martin. “And results were the lowest since the 2005 shutdown.”
And for the first time in recent past, arsenic levels measured below the 2018 objective set by the Trail Health and Environment Committee (THEC).
The committee met Tuesday evening to review Teck Trail Operations’ report on fugitive dust reduction and dustfall update.
“This is the result of much improved and continued performance of the dust abatement equipment associated with the drossing plant and the lead refinery,” said Martin, THEC chair. “It’s the bag houses and ongoing monitoring and maintenance of their dust recovery systems, and it’s very good news.”
With the $40 million smelter recycle facility nearing completion, Martin says fugitive dust emissions are anticipated to decrease significantly.
“The plant will be ready for service in July,” he explained. “And there’s going to be an operational transition into the building that will take a few months before all materials that are currently handled outside, will be handled within the building itself.”
He said the new building is “monstrous” and will contain all the material now housed in the lower area of Tadanac, known as the “beach.”
“When it’s ready for service, (there will be) an expected and anticipated 25 per cent reduction in fugitive emissions, so it’s huge,” said Martin.
Other projects now approved for feasibility studies include installation of wind fencing and dusting control misters in the roaster concentrate pad area and the zinc handling area.
“As well, they are continuing a very aggressive dust control program on the roadways, with sweeping and watering,” he added.