Dust emission is one of the critical problems of the mining industry. Dust emission can cause respiratory diseases among workers and adjacent residents of the factory and environmental pollution in the region. This study aims to reduce dust emissions of an iron ore concentrate plant in Iran. Applying dust control methods can affect the production process. Therefore, in this study, the value engineering (VE) method has been used, which focuses on improving the processes without affecting the main functions. This method is implemented in three stages. In the pre-study stage of VE, the prerequisites of study, such as determining the management requirements, study scope, evaluation criteria, forming the VE team, and planning, were met. In the study stage, the required information was collected; the studied process functions were identified and ranked; 62 ideas were created based on the functions and then evaluated; the final scenarios for the selected device, hopper, were developed and ranked using the VIKOR method; and finally, confirmation of the results by the management was obtained. In the post-study stage, the results will be implemented. The approach of this study was based on maintaining the functions of the production process and production rate and finding the most effective solution to reduce dust and environmental hazards, the most efficient solution in terms of performance, and the most cost-effective solution in terms of fixed and variable costs. According to the results, dry and wet dust suppression systems are the best options among the scenarios to meet the objectives of this study. © 2021. The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature.