Ecology and Energy Saving at the Enterprise
Compliance with environmental standards in the metallurgical industry is an integral working principle of the Pobuzhsky Ferro-Nickel Plant. The implementation of environmental protection measures was one of the first strategic steps taken by the international investor Solway in 2004. Our hard and fruitful work resulted in obtaining the international “environmental” certificates ISO 14001: 2004 and OHSAS 18000. The plant was certified in 2015 and these documents confirm the company’s sustainable development in improving the environmental component.
The first “environmental” measures implemented by Solway Group at the plant were the creation of a gas purification system for the converter department of the metallurgical shop and the application of a briquetting system and the return of dust from electrical filters to the technological process. These and other environmental protection measures allowed the company to reduce the amount of harmful emissions by almost a third in 2006.
In 2011, the plant was transformed into a closed-loop water supply enterprise. As such, it completely abandoned PFC’s natural reservoirs. The parallel refurbishment of treatment plants has improved the quality of the industrial water, which can now be given to local farmers for irrigation purposes. The cost of the works amounted to approximately UAH 2 million.
In August 2015, the first stage of gas purification equipment was replaced in one of the tube furnaces to reduce emissions of pollutants. A multi-channel fine dust collector “Buran” (MPU) was installed which reduced the load and wear of the electrostatic precipitator at the second stage of gas purification equipment.
In 2017, in order to achieve the maximum possible results of raw materials processing, we built a line for processing slag ferronickel into building materials. Pobuzhsky Ferro-Nickel Plant also uses metallurgical slag to fill up old quarries where nickel was mined during the Soviet era. Works in the area of reclamation of disturbed territories reproduce the natural terrain and improve the quality of the soil.
In 2017, the plant plans to purchase and begin installation of a third gas treatment stage. In 2018, the plant plans to build a block of dewatering activated sludge. This will reduce the volume of sediment accumulation in the existing silt fields, and later make it possible to reclaim them.
Pobuzhsky Ferro-Nickel Plant plans for the reconstruction of aspiration systems and gas purification equipment for drying drums and several workshops during 2020. The company’s specialists continue their ongoing work in the field of environmental protection. Environmental protection is an integral part of the plant’s strategic development plans. In the last 5 years alone, investments in environmental technologies amounted to UAH 9 million.
Pobuzhsky Ferro-Nickel Plant constantly improves its energy efficiency and saving in the production of ferronickel. Solway Investment Group has consistently integrated Ukraine’s sold ferroalloy producer into the European energy space, where the principles of energy saving and energy efficiency have been standard practice across the industry for several decades.
In Ukraine, one of the main government documents on energy conservation is the “New Energy Strategy of Ukraine to 2035” which was approved by the Cabinet of Ministers in August 2017. One of the strategic goals is to integrate Ukraine into the EU energy system and adapt the country’s legislation to the EU legal system, as well as to Directives 2005/89/EC and 2004/67/EC, and Regulation 994/2010. These documents were all discussed in a previous Energy Strategy approved by the Ukrainian government in 2013.
Entry to the European level requires a responsible approach towards the use of energy. Therefore, since 2003, Solway has introduced energy saving and eco-technologies into PFC’s production processes.
The phased modernization created all the conditions for a waste-free manufacturing process. For example, the company partly uses slag products to backfill old quarries. This restores soil fertility and partly recycles it into rubble used in road construction. Recently, abrasive materials for grinding surfaces and electrodes for the metallurgical industry have also been made from waste. Between 2013-2014, total investments in energy-saving technologies at Pobuzhsky Ferro-Nickel Plant exceeded $15 million.
The plant has also changed fuel twice in order to make production more economical. Back in 2004, PFC initiated a project to change the fuel in four burning tubular furnaces to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions and increase efficiency: the company switched from fuel oil to natural gas. The project was implemented in 2005-2006 with the support of the State Environmental Investment Agency of Ukraine.
Later, in the context of natural gas shortages in Ukraine, Pobuzhsky Ferro-Nickel Plant began to convert thermal furnaces to coal dust. This reduced the use of “blue fuel” more than five-fold: from 85 million cubic meters (2013) to 16 million cubic meters (2014). One of the two ore-thermal furnaces was reworked by HATCH (Canada), which increased its capacity by 10%.
Additional modernization of the lining of the converter and the use of innovative materials made it possible to achieve savings of UAH 3.2 million every month. At the same time, as a result of the introduction of new technologies, the production cost of the company’s basic product, ferronickel, was reduced by $50/ton.
Pobuzhsky Ferro-Nickel Plant will continue its modernization of its production processes.
ISO 14001:2004 Certificate is an international standard containing requirements for the environmental management system ISO 14001:2004 Certificate is an international standard containing requirements for the environmental management system (international version) Quality Management System Certificate (International Version) Quality Management System Certificate
Pobuzhsky Ferronickel Plant LLC is the only metallurgical enterprise in Ukraine which uses direct metallurgical processing technology (without enrichment and consolidation) of up to
1.5 million tons of complex natural-alloyed ores with production of more than 110,000 tons of ferronickel. This technology includes pre-drying of the entire ore mass, smelting of hot-cork into ferronickel in ore-thermal furnaces and furnace refining of ferronickel in a basic oxygen converter.
The enterprise has developed and implemented an integrated management system which is fully compliant with ISO 9001:2015, ISO 14001:2015 and ISO 45001:2018. This system allows the company to perform its operations to create high quality outputs in an ecologically safe manner and in adherence with international standards.
Our policy is aimed at continuously reducing the negative impact of production on the environment, improving production control, providing health protection to our employees and local citizens from any potential negative impact of the enterprise, as well as to reduce the risk of possible accidents and their potential consequences.
PFP guarantees fulfillment of all legislative and other responsibilities before its consumers and society, meets its obligations for continued implementation of the integrated management system, taking into account the company’s existing tasks and targets.
PFP Management obliges itself to adhere to the following principles:
- Qualitative and timely fulfillment of clients’ requirements
- Improvement of stable equipment work due to implementation of new technologies and use of modern equipment.
- Improving the enterprise’s industrial safety by means of constant production control, as well as ensuring safe working conditions.
- Reducing the amount of harmful emissions, reducing the amount of wastes distributed through the use of new environmental technologies, materials and process automatization.
- Providing information and support to internal and external links, including active communication with interested parties regarding quality, ecology and health and labor safety.
- Conducting trainings for employees and working with them to improve their professionalism.
In addition to this policy, the Plant aims to continuously develop and upgrade its integrated system of quality control, health protection and labor safety, and environmental protection, as a means of realizing its principles and obligations under this Policy. The company also strives to create an atmosphere among its employees in which they work together to ensure the quality of work, labor safety, industrial safety and environmental protection in the workplace, regardless of an employees’ religious beliefs, social positions, nationalities or personal interests.
PFP senior management accept responsibility for realization and implementation of this Policy across all organizational levels and structural departments within the enterprise.