Hunter environmentalists have welcomed newly announced work by the state's coal industry to help bring down dust emissions at the region's mines but have labelled it as "old news".
The New South Wales Minerals Council will be testing a new weather forecasting system over the next three months to try to tackle mining-caused emissions in the region.
But the Hunter Community Environment Centre says the Environment Protection Authority required all of the state's mines more than a year ago to minimise dust pollution by 80 per cent.
The group's James Whelan says that has not happened and it has now spiralled out of control.
"Early in the new year some people put out stories that are fairly old and this certainly fits the bill," he said.
"This is not a substantive new measure, this is simply the follow through of commitments that have been made more than 12 months ago; that are necessary but by themselves inadequate.
"The New South Wales Government needs to keep a lid on dust pollution levels in the Hunter."
© ABC 2014
17:16 EDT Many farmers in southern Western Australia are working around the clock to keep their stock alive after a long, dry summer.