How to report dust emissions

Concerned about or need information on reporting dust emissions? Our Pollution Watch Service is here to help.
Last updated:

What is dust?

Dust is a common air pollutant generated by many different sources and activities. Dust is fine particles of matter that can travel through the air and deposit on surfaces. Activities generating dust can have adverse effects on ambient air quality and the health and amenity of sensitive receptors.

The characteristics of the dust emitted (including particle size, composition and colour) will influence the potential impact on human health, amenity and the environment.

Reporting dust

We generally regulate large industries licensed under the Environmental Protection Act 1986 (EP Act). Dust emissions are regulated under the EP Act if they are of a level to be considered ‘pollution’ as defined under the EP Act, or the specific activity generating the dust is a regulated activity (covered by specific environmental protection regulations, or under a licence issued under Part V of the EP Act).

Activities that produce dust emissions that we regulate include:

  • bulk material storage and handling
  • burial of waste
  • crushing and screening processes
  • asphalt, bricks and cement manufacturing
  • mineral processing
  • mining (coal and mineral sands).

You can search for licensed premises on our website. If you are impacted by dust emissions from a licensed premises, you can submit a report to our Pollution Watch service (see ‘How to report dust emissions to Pollution Watch’ below).

You can also consider contacting the premises directly. Conditions of a licence or works approval issued under the EP Act may include complaint management conditions, requiring the premises to take action to respond to any complaints received.

Other potential sources of nuisance dust, and information on who to direct your complaint to, is provided below.

Potential sources of dust


Residential and commercial land development

Dust control is generally covered in the local government approval for the development application

My Council directory
Residential and/or commercial activities, light industries, woodworking, grinding, roads, trotting tracks, extractive industries involving sand or gravel extractionMy Council directory
Main Roads WA roadworks and related construction work, construction materials, sand stockpiles

Main Roads WA

Phone: 138 138

When investigating a dust complaint, we consider the:

  • amount of dust being emitted
  • duration and rate of emission and the dust’s characteristics and qualities
  • sensitivity of the environment into which the dust is being emitted
  • the impact the dust emission has caused.

Often tracking the source of dust can be difficult so evidence such as photos and video footage can be useful.

If you are regularly impacted by dust, we recommend you keep a diary to record the details of the events and report the event as soon as possible. Notes in your diary may include the time, date and weather conditions and what you experienced and observed. This will assist any investigation.

If you have concerns about any health effects you are experiencing, please seek medical advice. Contact your regular doctor, After hours GP or HealthDirect via phone on 1800 022 222.

For information on health effects of dust, refer to the Department of Health.

How to report dust emissions to Pollution Watch

You can submit a report to Pollution Watch using the online report form below or by calling our 24-hour Pollution Watch hotline on 1300 784 782.

When you submit a report to Pollution Watch, you will receive a response acknowledging your submission. We may contact you for further information or to discuss your report in more detail.

Not all matters reported to Pollution Watch are managed by our department. For reports that relate to local government or another State or Australian Government agency, we will forward the report to the relevant authority.

Go to our Pollution Watch page for more information.