Iron and steel group Petropavlovsk Chernaya Metallurgiya is the first ISO 14001:2004 certified iron ore miner in the Far East. It is also the first and only mine operator in the Amur Region and the Jewish Autonomous Region to have this type of certified system. The certificate was awarded by AFNOR Rus.
“Several years ago, our Group made a significant leap forward in terms of developing its industrial activities, particularly through the construction of new sites. Given the scale of our mine and metallurgical production, there is no doubt in our minds that it should be based on the most appropriate standards for environmental management to promote the protection of natural resources and the reduction of environmental risks in general," explains Iuri Makarov, Managing Director of iron and steel group Petropavlovsk S.A.R.L.
Work to implement the environmental management system in accordance with ISO 14001 started in December 2010 on all of the Group’s sites in the Far East, whether operational or under construction. It continued throughout 2011 in conjunction with Environmental Resources Management (ERM), a global environment, occupational health and safety and industrial safety consultant, and the process was completed within the deadline set.
In light of the results, the system was submitted to AFNOR Rus for an independent audit with a view to obtaining certification.
AFNOR auditors visited the Group’s headquarters during the certification procedure, as well as all of its production sites and operations in the Amur Region and the Jewish Autonomous Region.
The parent company and all of the Group’s strategic sites, including the Olekminskiy mines (in the Amur Region), the Kimkano-Sutarskiy mines, the Ushumunskiy coal mine and the bridge under construction over the Amur River (in the Jewish Autonomous Region) finally obtained the certificate of compliance with ISO 14001:2004 on 28 February 2012.
The certification covers all of the Group's core businesses, namely exploration, the mining of iron ore, titanomagnetite, lignite and useful common minerals, the production of titanomagnetite and ilmenite concentrates, construction and civil engineering
Speaking about the certification process, Léonid Dvorkin, Managing Director of AFNOR's Russian subsidiary, explains the key factors behind its success: "Our auditors were particularly impressed by the Petropavlovsk Group’s achievements in terms of biodiversity protection and environmental empowerment of both employees and the population in the regions where the Group operates, as well as top management’s efforts to implement the principles of sustainable development in partnership with local authorities and communities.
A set of measures adopted by the Group to reduce the impact of its activities on the environment and decrease the environmental risks was deemed highly effective.
The AFNOR auditors also appreciated the committed approach to implementing the environmental programmes at the Kimkano-Sutarskiy mines. Procedures aimed at improving soil fertility and reforestation indicators scored particularly well. Furthermore, both the quality of the environmental monitoring programmes implemented and the level of cooperation with the various economic players involved in protecting employment and the environment were seen to be remarkable.
We would like to highlight the strengths of the Ushumunskiy coal mine with regard to nature conservation, in particular:
In accordance with the spirit of ISO 14001:2004, the environmental management system in operation implies a continuous improvement process focused on nature conservation and gradual reduction of the impact of the Group’s activities on the environment. As such, we have suggested several areas for improvement to enhance its environmental indicators. We will check that our recommendations are being implemented during the follow-up audits and prior to renewal of the environmental management system’s 3-year certification.”
Svetlana Obydenkova, Environment Division manager at Petropavlovsk S.A.R.L., concludes, “The fact that our environmental management system has obtained ISO 14001:2004 certification is significant for several reasons.
Firstly, it proves that the Group is operating in accordance with current environmental legislation. Secondly, it confirms the Group’s desire to reduce the negative impact of its activities on the environment. Thirdly, it demonstrates that our employees have fully understood the role they must play in nature conservation, which is possibly essential."
For more information about the AFNOR Group’s Russian subsidiary, please visit http://www.afnor.ru
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