Magnitogorsk Iron and Steel Works (MMK) has approved environmental goals for 2020 and the MMK Group's environmental programme, which will cost RUB 13.3 billion this year. RUB 12.95 billion of this amount will be allocated by the parent company.
MMK CEO Pavel Shilyaev outlined in the Company's key objectives in the field of environmental protection for 2020:
• Reduce the air quality index (AQI) reading in Magnitogorsk by 6%;
• Reduce overall emissions of air pollutants by 3%
• Reduce dust emissions in production lines at the sintering plant, in coke and chemical production, at the blast furnace and at the steelmaking and oxygen converter plants by 17% per one tonne of steel;
• Recycle 10.285 million tonnes of current and waste metallurgical slags and use 1.8 million tonnes of waste as secondary material resources in sintering production;
• Perform the technical stage of the 3rd stage of recultivation of disturbed lands at the West pit of Magnitogorsk Mountain (with an area of 9 hectares) and the biological reclamation phase of the Western quarry (with an area of 5.6 hectares).
To achieve this goal, MMK Group has adopted an environmental programme for 2020 worth more than RUB 13 billion. The most significant part of environmental investments - more than RUB 6 billion - will be spent on the construction of environmental protection structures at new production facilities, primarily in coking production. In particular, environmental protection facilities at the coke oven battery complex No.12 are under construction, as well as facilities being built as part of the reconstruction of the chemical products capture and processing plant.
MMK's environmental programme for 2020 includes 48 measures to reduce emissions of pollutants. This area is traditionally one of the priorities in the environmental activities of the plant. This year, measures to protect air quality will affect all metallurgical processing plants, as well as divisions within the main energy department and the logistics department. The key activities in this area are the construction of an aspiration system for the foundry yard of the blast furnace No. 2, the reconstruction of gas cleaning and exhaust paths of steel furnaces in the electric steelmaking shop, and the implementation of a programme to reduce dust and gas emissions at the coke shop. In total, over RUB 3.7 billion will be spent on measures to reduce harmful emissions in 2020. The implementation of these measures will allow MMK to achieve targets for reducing emissions, ensure compliance with environmental regulations and improve the efficiency and reliability of gas treatment plant equipment.
In 2020, MMK will allocate over RUB 2.4 billion to implement 20 measures to reduce the discharge of pollutants into water bodies, the largest of which is the reconstruction of the mechanical and biochemical wastewater treatment plant at the chemical products capture and processing plant.
MMK's environmental programme also provides for the implementation of nine measures for waste disposal in 2020, which will cost more than RUB 300 million, and five measures for the reclamation of disturbed land (around RUB 500 million). There are plans for 19 further environmental measures worth RUB 340 million in MMK Group companies. In total, MMK Group's environmental programme involves the implementation of 105 measures, for which the Group plans to allocate RUB 13,3 million.
Continuous reduction and prevention of harmful environmental impacts is an essential element of MMK's long-term and sustainable development strategy. MMK's environmental management system is certified to meet the requirements of the international standard ISO 14001: 2015. The plant is implementing the strategic initiative 'Clean city', which assumes that the air quality index reading in Magnitogorsk will decrease to 5 units by 2025, which corresponds to the status of 'clean city'. At the same time, there are plans to reduce total emissions in Magnitogorsk by 20%, and emissions of the most harmful hazard class 1 and 2 substances by 10 times.
Pavel Shilyaev, CEO of MMK, noted that the plant's environmental initiatives have already had a positive impact on the quality of air in Magnitogorsk. In 2019, the Russian Ministry of Natural Resources and Ecology removed Magnitogorsk from the list of cities with the highest level of air pollution.