Welcome to the official website of the Aggregate and Quarry Association of New Zealand. It is specifically for people who would like to find out more about quarrying and the role it has to play in our society. The quarrying industry provides essential materials to meet the demands of New Zealand’s growth and infrastructure. We hope the information in this site outlines the importance of what we do, and in particular the high priority we place on environmental issues within the industry.
Certificate of Competence update
The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment intends to contact all current Certificate of Competence (COC) holders to provide information about upcoming changes.
It is important that your details are up to date in the COC database maintained by MITO on behalf of the Ministry.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org or phone Michelle on 0800 88 21 21 to provide your:
- full name
- certificate number and type (or Date of Birth if you don’t have this information available)
- email address
- postal address
- current employer
- contact phone number.
Please provide this information to Michelle by Friday 27 September 2013.
MITO will ensure your current contact details are available to the Ministry.
In order to ensure we miss no certificate holders, requests for information are going out via the AusIMM, AQA, IOQ, MinEx and Straterra so we apologise in advance if you receive more than one request for this information.
Working Safer: a blueprint for health and safety at work
The Government has announced the most significant reform of New Zealand’s workplace health and safety system in 20 years.
New Zealand’s serious injury, fatality and occupational disease rates are unacceptably high and aren’t improving. Working Safer: a blueprint for health and safety at work is the Government’s response to the recommendations of the Independent Taskforce on Workplace Health and Safety set up in April 2012, partially in response to the Pike River Coal Mine disaster.
The reform will require leadership and action from business, workers and Government working together in order to achieve the goal of reducing New Zealand’s workplace injury and death toll by 25 per cent by 2020.
The changes include:
- An overhaul of the law, supported by clear, consistent guidelines and information for business on their requirements
- More funding for WorkSafe New Zealand to strengthen enforcement and education and implement the changes
- A focus on high risk areas
- Stronger focus on occupational harm
- Better coordination between government agencies
- Improved worker participation
- Stronger penalties, enforcement tools and court powers.
When will the changes happen?
For now, it is business as usual. In December 2013 WorkSafe New Zealand, the new health and safety regulator, will be up and running. The health and safety regulator functions from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) will transfer to WorkSafe at this point.
The Health and Safety at Work Bill will also be introduced into Parliament in December, and when it has gone through the legislative process it will replace the Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992. Regulations will also be developed to support the bill, and we will be consulting with stakeholders as part of that work.
The new law and key supporting regulations are expected to start coming into force from the end of 2014.
For more information…
- See Workplace health and safety reform
- Call the Contact Centre on 0800 20 90 20
- Or email H&SInformationRequest@mbie.govt.nz
Young female environmentalist to lead quarry industry
Andrea Cave has been elected chair of the Aggregate and Quarry Association. The AQA Board and its members are delighted to break with history and tradition to welcome a woman to the leadership role. With an industry focus on the environment, it is also pertinent that Andrea is the Environment Manager with Winstone Aggregates.
Andrea is well versed in environmental mitigation and helping the public to understand that quarrying is no longer a dirty word but an industry that can maintain or enhance the environment. She leads the environmental, improved biodiversity and sustainability functions of her organisation, including establishing and maintaining relationships with iwi, community groups and other regulatory stakeholders.
She points out that quarrying is a temporary use of land, although with rock quarries such use may span the working life of a generation. “Nonetheless, sooner or later mineral extraction will be concluded and the site will either be restored to its former use or converted to support some other activity which best meets the needs of the local community. That’s what we need to be working towards even as we supply materials to build the infrastructure for those people.”
From an AQA perspective there is no underestimating that the forthcoming year is going to be a challenging one for the NZ quarry industry on a number of fronts. At the forefront, and rightly so, is health and safety. “The aggregates industry operates in a potentially hazardous environment so this is an area where as an industry we must work together, be proactive and continue to raise the bar,” said Andrea. “Everyone has the right to work in a safe environment, everyone is responsible for their safety and the safety of others and a safe and healthy work environment leads to a safe and healthy business.”
Another issue for the industry as a whole is the aging workforce. Recent studies by the Department of Labour show that the New Zealand mining and quarrying industry has an ageing workforce, with the dominant age group between 40 and 45 years. The ability to attract and retain new people into the industry is of paramount importance over the coming years. Andrea said “quarrying is an exciting and diverse industry to be involved in. Whether your interest is in geology, computer technology, heavy machinery or even explosives, the industry has established a range of courses and qualifications to help you build a challenging and fulfilling career.
“The ongoing promotion of the industry is something which I would like to become more involved with. There are examples of excellent newcomers and it is important to highlight these to keep the momentum going. This website fills in a bit more about that:
“One of the advantages the industry has in order to meet these challenges is strong industry associations. At an individual level we have a strong Institute of Quarrying (IOQ) and its mission is to ‘promote the fellowship of members and enhance the image and professionalism of quarrying in New Zealand’ and at a company level we have the Aggregate and Quarry Association (AQA) that has a strategic leadership role for the industry.”
A strong economy and excellent quality of life are literally built on a foundation of aggregates from the driveway to the workplace. We drive, stand and walk on aggregates yet their importance to society is almost universally under estimated.
Without aggregates we would not have roads, railways, airports, schools, hospitals and other public buildings, clean water supplies, electrical power and a myriad of everyday items such as glass and crockery. Without aggregates we would neither be able to maintain our existing vital infrastructural facilities nor would the built environment be able to expand enabling economic growth both regionally and nationally.
In 2011, New Zealand produced 25.81 million tonnes of aggregates worth $438,835,658
And with an estimated population of 4,422,700, each New Zealander consumed 5.84 tonnes of aggregates during the year. The economic benefit to our country (direct, indirect and induced) is $2.1 billion and approximately 10,000 jobs.
“To keep providing the base materials New Zealand needs to keep developing, the AQA has an extremely strong board - the level of technical expertise, practical experience and industry knowledge gives me confidence that we can continue on the great work done by previous AQA Boards.
“Our Deputy Chair is Jayden Ellis, who is Technical Manager – Construction Materials, with Stevenson Resources. He is highly regarded in the industry that he has served for 20 years He was appointed as a Technical Expert for IANZ 2008 and also in that year was awarded NZCE(Civil). He is particularly interested in technical solutions, aggregate product development, quality assurance, and control.”
Andrea says she is more than ready to face any challenges that are ahead. “The AQA has a united Board, and strong industry support - together we are helping New Zealand to grow and develop.”
MIMICIO Environmental Excellence Awards winners
It’s a turnaround for most people to recognize that quarrying operations can be havens for the environment. But this year’s prestigious MIMICO Environmental Excellence Awards were presented to four companies for their work to enhance the natural world.
The awards were judged by former Commissioner for the Environment, Dr Morgan Williams, and sponsored by MIMICO, a well-respected company that sells, hires and services heavy machinery to the quarrying, mining, contracting, construction, recycling and forestry industries.
Entries were judged on the degree of positive environmental impact, originality and innovation and the degree of difficulty involved as well as if the project was voluntary or mandatory. Particular note was taken of the extent of and nature of relations with local tangata whenua, though this criteria was not part of the formal scoring
The Gold Award went to Rodney Aggregate Supplies, Whangaripo Quarry, Matakana
Jason Hinton, Quarry Manager, sums up the teams approach “quarries are part of the community, and although we may not be everyone’s first choice of neighbour, it is possible for us to be a good neighbour.” The site liaison group is represented by the local community iwi and quarry management meet regularly to set actions plans for environmental management. In the past months this has included native plantings, maintenance of existing plantings and managing weeds and animals. The quarry has also worked closely with the landowner to schedule screen planting to achieve coverage while minimizing impact on his farming operations.
The quarry has also established a Wai Care programme to monitor stream quality and enhance wetlands systems. The water health and water quality monitoring tools, provided in a simple and quick to use field kit used by Wai Care include tests for pH, temperature clarity nitrates and nitrites, phosphorous and dissolved oxygen. It is also encouraged to take a macro invertebrate (bug) sample to complete the overall 'picture' of water quality/health. These resources and the water quality data collected can be accessed by others by people and organisations, including care groups, councils, universities, and government agencies such as Landcare Research and the Department of Conservation.
The Silver Award was presented to Tony Hunter, General Manager of Blackhead Quarries in Dunedin. The quarry is a in the city and the focus of the entry is its rich history and the proactive approach the quarry team has always taken to managing its effects on the city and its people. Tony Hunter provides an excellent example of how a quarry retains its ‘social licence’ to operate by always recognising its impacts, responding early, being open to visits and focusing on providing value to a multitude of small business customers. Key highlights were:
The quarry has a 132 year history that has obtained, without legal challenge, consents for another 50 that include the slow filling of the quarry and its transition to new roles.
The team have long been leaders in environmental measurement commissioning the construction of instruments to record vibrations long before they could be purchased off the shelf. As a result they have stayed ahead of any concerns their neighbours or the council may have.
As good neighbours there has been proactive sponsoring of quarry visits by all who are interested from community groups, schools, university and professionals.
Tony Hunter said “best practice is always getting better,” and at Blackhead they are.
Two Bronze Awards were presented to Fulton Hogan Ltd, Gore Crushing, Gore, and Winstone Aggregates, Three Kings Quarry and controlled fill, Auckland city.
The highlights of the Fulton Hogan entry included the strong focus on water qualities – very important given the crushing plants proximity to the Mataura River. The detail of good environmental management and compliance but the whole team was impressive - all staff undertake an onsite environmental management training module. There is a well developed environmental management and safety plan which is clearly displayed on the office work-room wall. It has an established community liaison group of near neighbours and encouragement of community and other groups visits.
On site and in the whole Fulton Hogan team there is excellent leadership on all matters environmental.
The Three Kings quarry and fill is a small inner city quarry in transition from extraction to re-fill. The entry focuses on several innovative engagements with the drivers re-filling trucks to reduce the environmental impacts of their movement and enhanced driver safety. . Key highlights included the passionate and innovative leadership of environmental management and compliance by the Three Kings quarry and wider Winstone Aggregates team. As the quarries environmental coordinator, Elyse Laface, says “a non compliance incidence, even if from a storm, is considered a personal failure regardless of whether the results are minor”
The team is committed to liaison with local community groups via quarterly meetings and quarry visits by community groups.
All four entries were very good examples of what can be achieved by committed staff in companies that truly understand the value of being a good neighbour and operating their sometimes challenging business in an environmentally sustainable way. They are all excellent illustrations of good leadership and passion to do things better.
"MIMICO is pleased to be able to continue our support of the industry through our sponsorship of the MIMICO Environmental Excellence Awards," says Rex Davies, MIMICO's Managing Director. "I'm pleased to see the high calibre of entries this year and I'd like to congratulate all the winners."
Click here for an update on MITO's training plans for the industry: