Cooperation with nature reserves
Nornickel’s production facilities are adjacent to nature reserves on the Taimyr and Kola Peninsulas. Kola MMC’s sites are only 10–15 km away from the Pasvik and the Lapland Nature Reserves (Murmansk Region). The Company’s Polar Division is located some 80–100 km away from the buffer zone of the Putoransky Reserve (Krasnoyarsk Territory).
For over a decade now, Nornickel has annually provided hundreds of millions of roubles to nature reserves for the purpose of preserving the unique Arctic environment. This is in line with Nornickel’s strategy set to embrace green technologies in the next five years through a new investment cycle to secure sustainable development.
In the Trans-Baikal Territory, the Company supports the R&D initiatives and environmental awareness programmes of the Relict Oaks State Reserve.
The Pasvik Nature Reserve is home to rare animal species listed on the international and Russia’s Red Data Books. Since 2006, as part of the contract signed with Kola MMC, the Pasvik Nature Reserve has been carrying out an ecological assessment of the natural environment in the area of Pechenganickel Plant (Zapolyarny, Nickel and their suburbs, including the Pasvik State Nature Reserve), and developing a long-term environmental monitoring programme.
Nornickel supports scientific research carried out by the nature reserve, its efforts to protect natural and cultural heritage, promote tourism and environmental education. The Company helps establish an international natural historical open-air museum on the Varlam island. Nornickel sponsored the book called The Varlam Island – the Pearl of Pasvik. In addition, in 2018, the Company provided financial assistance for purchasing a mobile environmental monitoring lab.
The Lapland State Nature Biosphere Reserve is one of the largest protected areas in Europe covering 278,000 ha. Established with the aim of saving the wild reindeer from extinction, it now boasts over 1,000 reindeer, the largest reindeer herd in Northern Europe. The European beaver population has also been successfully restored.
Since 2002, the Lapland Biosphere Reserve has entered into contracts to reclaim disturbed natural environment in the areas affected by multi-year emissions from Severonickel Plant, and monitor areas adjacent to Monchegorsk site and the Lapland Biosphere Reserve. The data obtained during a scientific research provided a basis for the subsequent contractual work to reclaim disturbed lands, and bring about sanitary and fire protection improvements in the forest areas. The Company also provided financial aid for the Lapland Biosphere Reserve to make a new nature trail and publish books about Oleg Semyonov-Tyan-Shansky and Herman Kreps, the reserve founders.
In 2018, the Putoransky State Nature Reserve kept implementing projects selected under Nornickel’s World of New Opportunities charitable programme. The projects involved annual open air events in the protected area, reclamation of lands for commercial reindeer herding and dwelling of indigenous ethnic minorities, research and environmental activities.
Nature conservation programmes
Nornickel is committed to a proactive approach to environmental protection and sustainable use of natural resources. To this end, the Company is deploying development programme 2016–2023 that involves major upgrade of its production capacities and radical environmental safety improvements.
Environmental education and experience sharing are another priority area. The Company organised The Environment Protection and Sustainable Development in the North VII environmental forum held in Murmansk on 15 and 16 November 2018. The forum offered a venue for discussing Arctic region development in terms of environment and corporate social and environmental responsibility, sharing experience of implementing environmental protection initiatives in the Far North and the Environment national project in northern territories, and integrating the best available and cutting edge technologies. More than 200 experts from all over Russia and Arctic region attended the event.
Norilsk Nickel’s Polar Division is working on a project to breed valuable fish species and release them into natural water bodies. In 2018, the Company released 475,000 Siberian sturgeon fingerlings into the Yenisey River for the purpose of reproduction of aquatic bioresources. The initiative was supposed to compensate for the damage done to water bodies during the construction of the new tailings pit for Talnakh Concentrator and sand extraction at the Seredysh Island. The Company plans to continue valuable fish breeding and release projects in 2019.
2018 also saw Nornickel continue landscaping of the Dolgoye Lake area in Norilsk.
In 2018, Polar Division together with authorities of cities where the Division operates contributed to the sanitary improvement and landscaping of urban territories. In summer, the Company also contributed to the roadside clean-up, water body protection, waterfront landscaping and facelift of several camping sites. Furthermore, Polar Division planted trees at the Zapolyarnik stadium.
Around 190 employees of the Company joined the annual environmental marathon held in Norilsk in 2018. Volunteers organised ca. 100 events involving 2,500 people of Norilsk, held 20 clean-up days well as festivals and workshops, planted 100 trees, collected 25 tonnes of garbage, and improved several urban facilities.