Advisory Committee on Tunnel Air Quality

The Advisory Committee on Tunnel Air Quality (ACTAQ) is chaired by NSW Chief Scientist & Engineer and consists of a range of experts and officers in fields related to road tunnels, air quality and human health.  This includes senior representatives from the Roads and Maritime Services and the NSW Ministry of Health (NSW Chief Health Officer), as well as an independent air quality expert, Dr Ian Longley from the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (New Zealand).

The NSW Environmental Protection Authority, the Department of Planning and Environment and the Office of Environment and Heritage are observers to the Committee. Professor Peter Sturm, Institute for Internal Combustion Engines and Thermodynamics, Graz University of Technology, Austria is a technical advisor to the Committee.

The Advisory Committee undertakes work to better understand air quality in association with road tunnels in Sydney, including within cabins, within tunnels, and external to tunnels in the local surrounds.

The Advisory Committee is also asked to provide advice to the Department of Planning and Environment on air quality aspects of relevant Environmental Impact Statements, which is undertaken so as to avoid conflicts of interest. This advice is published on the Department of Planning and Environment’s Major Project Assessments portal.


Terms of Reference

To provide advice to the NSW Government based on national and international practice and experience with motorway tunnels that will:

  • Enable setting of performance based standards for emissions associated with road tunnels.
  • Recommend appropriate monitoring, compliance and reporting mechanisms to support public confidence in the operation of road tunnels.
  • Provide ongoing advice to Government on air quality issues arising from the assessment and operation of road tunnels.

Reports from the Committee

ACTAQ Studies and Technical Reports (August 2014 - June 2019)

  • Advisory Committee on Tunnel Air Quality supporting reports from February 2016 - June 2019 can be found here. These include:
    • Review of Ambient Monitoring Data from Two Sydney Road Tunnels (M5 East & Cross-City)
    • Studies and background information to inform the in-tunnel NO2 limit
    • Optimisation of the application of GRAL Model in the Australian context
    • Review of In-Cabin CO2 Levels
    • Comment on Australian Vehicle Emissions Discussion Paper
  • Advisory Committee on Tunnel Air Quality Initial Report (August 2014) and Technical Papers 1-11 (August-September 2014) can be found here.

Chair and Membership

  • NSW Chief Scientist & Engineer (Chair)
  • NSW Chief Health Officer
  • Chief Executive RMS
  • Dr Ian Longley, Senior Urban Air Quality Scientist, NIWA, New Zealand

The Chair of the committee retains the right to engage additional independent advice to support its considerations

Observers

  • Executive Director Priority Projects Assessments, Department of Planning & Environment
  • Director Reform and Compliance, EPA
  • Director Climate and Atmospheric Science, OEH

Technical Adviser

  • Professor Peter Sturm, Institute for Internal Combustion Engines and Thermodynamics, Graz University of Technology, Austria

Secretariat

  • Director Environment, Senior Environmental Specialist (Air Quality), RMS