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Whitehaven's Tarrawonga Coal Mine near Boggabri has been fined and ordered to do an environmental audit after it allegedly discharged dirty water from a failed sediment dam.

The mine is also alleged to have exceeded discharge limits in the lead-up to a major storm with heavy rainfall in March this year.

After allegedly failing to operate sediment basins in a proper and efficient manner, and with three illegal discharges since last year, the NSW Environment Protection Authority has issued two $15,000 penalty infringement fines and imposed a Mandatory Environmental Audit to improve protection to the surrounding mine environment.

EPA Acting Executive Director, Regulatory Operations, Greg Sheehy said the auditor will conduct a thorough assessment, including examining Tarrawonga Coal Mine's sediment dam construction and capacity, and dirty water management infrastructure.

Mr Sheehy also said the site needs to be operating in line with best industry practice and this audit will help achieve that standard.

Headlines provided by news.com.au