ALROSA, the largest diamond company in the world, summed up the main results of its ecological programs and events for 2017. Last year, the Company allocated RUB 4.4 bn for environmental programs. These funds allowed to implement the project of great importance to ALROSA and the regions and to significantly increase monitoring over the state of the environment.
In particular, last year ALROSA implemented two projects of significance for the Company and the region, timed, among other things, to the Environment Year in Russia. One of these projects provides for restoration of sewage treatment facilities with a capacity of 15 thousand cubic meters per day in Udachny town. This project is of strategic importance for the fishery region where local rivers require special protection. Restoration of sewage treatment facilities in Udachny allowed additional cleaning of sewage waters from organic pollution to comply with the threshold level values of fisheries water reservoirs.
The second project is the construction of the centre for pumping quarry and drainage waters from International underground mine to the western fissure. In order to exclude penetration of mineralized water to the landscape and surface water objects a return pumping complex and a pressure wells network have been constructed. Underground waters from Metegero-Ichersky underground reservoir come back without harming the environment.
In the republican events dedicated to the Environment Year, emphasis was also put on combating poaching, including installation of access barriers, organisation of round-the-clock posts on roads and participation of the Company's employees in raids for resisting illegal hunting or fishing, in order to preserve the region's biodiversity.
The adopted decision on creation of ALROSA's Single Environmental Centre, which unites and centralizes the environment protection functions earlier vested in separate enterprises and divisions, constitutes a notable result of the year. The Environmental Centre has assumed many functions: the expansion of the boundaries of industrial environmental control and the risk-oriented approach, the introduction of a geo-information monitoring system and the creation of an analytical database for the Company, the unification of rules and the development of unified approaches to solving problems in the field of environmental protection. The new unit will develop an environmental strategy for further integration into the overall development strategy of ALROSA.
In 2017, the company also significantly expanded its monitoring program. During the year, the company's ecologists took about 1.5 thousand samples of water, air, soil and bed deposits. This helps ALROSA to become more transparent, to determine with more precision the degree of the industry's impact on the environment and adjust its environmental policy.
"Protection of the environment is one of the most important areas of ALROSA's work. The Company's task in this area consists not only in minimizing any impact on the nature but in helping to resolve the existing problems in the region of its presence. Simultaneously with nature protection actions, ALROSA implements a whole range of projects that will have a long-time effect. For example, it gradually transfers its machinery to gas fuel which is more environment friendly, or introduces energy saving technologies. Our aim is to preserve the nature and beauty of Yakutia for many years. The Company's efforts in this area have been already lauded by independent organisations, but we shall proceed with development and improvement of this work. In particular, in 2018 financing for environmental activities will increase up to RUB 5.3 bn," said Polina Anisimova, Head of ALROSA Environmental Centre.