Environmental Protection

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Environmental Protection

In the field of environment protection, AB “Achema” gradually follows international conventions and agreements, the requirements of the EU and national environmental legislation. 

In its everyday practices, the company seeks for the effective use of natural resources, reduction of the impact of production on people and environment, installation of modern, effective and safe production technologies, reduction of pollution, installation of environmentally-friendly technologies, and grounding of the production of fertilizers and chemical products on the principles of sustainable development.

“Clean environment is essential for us and for future generations” is a principal statement of company’s environmental policy.

Prevention

AB “Achema” is constantly monitoring and evaluating its activities that may have environmental effects. Each year, the environmental programme stipulating the environmental means for the reduction of environmental effects is approved and performed and the funds for its realization are allocated.

Reliability and control of organic situation of AB “Achema”, a company producing chemical products, are the most important company’s priorities in the field of environmental protection. One of the principal aims of the company is the improvement of environmental situation and application of pollution prevention means in order to reduce the company’s impact on environment. A separate unit, Laboratory Control Center (LCC), was established in the company to monitor the environmental effects. Environmental management system meeting the requirements of ISO14001 standard was implemented in the company in 2000. Internal and external audits of Environmental Management System (AMS) are conducted at specified intervals.

The company has implemented Fertilizers Europe’s Product Stewardship Program to ensure the supervision of the production of fertilizers during all stages of production and liability for production on health, security, and environmental aspects throughout the entire lifecycle – from raw-materials to effective use.

The company includes all environmental requirements related to the activity in the field of environment protection in the register of legal requirements and transposed them to job descriptions, regulations, statutes, procedures, and Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control Permit No 2/15 of AB “Achema”.

The main fields of environment protection of AB “Achema” are as follows:
- to reduce environmental pollution (it is planned to implement the mean of reduction of pollution of circulating water in the cooling cycle in the urea department; the mean planned to be introduced in nitric acid department will enable the company to reduce ambient air pollution with NOx);
- to improve the quality of environmental researches (the focus is on the modernization of the devices of environmental pollution and devices measuring its influence. New generation measurement devices ensure precision, reliability, and operational effectiveness of measurements);
- to reduce the likelihood of emergencies and emergency situations; 
- to save natural and energy resources and raw-materials;
- to enhance the environmental qualification of employees. 

In 2015, partial requirements to the suppliers regarding their environmental obligations, promotion to use secondary raw-materials, etc. and business responsibilities were performed. The agreements with suppliers contain requirements with regard to the product, its packaging, labelling, safe transportation, as well as indication which documentation should be submitted (material safety sheets, product origin certificates or quality passports, certificates on the radiation tests – for natural origin products, etc.), delivery terms and liability in case of deviation from the requirements established in the contracts. The selection of contractors according to the established criteria is performed.  

Together with sold production the buyers are provided with material safety sheets with complete information on the producer of sold chemical substance or preparation (sold product), composition of chemical material, chemical and physical properties, environment- and health-related hazards and health, as well as protection means, first-aid means, fire-safety means, emergency liquidation means, requirements for use and storage of chemical materials, and requirements for the management of waste. 

External and internal training is conducted by integrating the topics of environment protection and the risk at work and occupational safety; 20 trainings (60 hours) were organized in 2015 and were attended by 200 employees. 

In 2015, international company “DEKRA Certification” conducted external audit of environmental management system and the validity of ISO14001 certificate was extended until 2018.

The investment in the amount of 3.68 million euros was allocated to the improvement of environment protection in 2015.
1. The means implemented in the reduction of environmental pollution resulted in the effectiveness of CAN dust treatment in bag filter by 3%. 
2. Laboratory control measuring devices enabling us to improve the quality of environmental tests were acquired for the improvement of monitoring of environmental pollution and influencing activities.
3. Special means have been allocated to reduce the risk of accidents and incidents that would enable the reduction of the number of emergency stops of units of production of nitric acid, to reduce the likelihood of pollution of surface (rainwater) and groundwater waste.
4. Special means allowing the reduction of the use of vapor, electricity and natural gas have been implemented to save natural and energy resources. 
5. The process condensate system was reconstructed in the ammonia production facility, the aerial coolers of synthesis department were expanded to enable us to reduce the costs of natural gas in the production of ammonia. 

Monitoring of the Environmental Quality 

AB “Achema” implements environmental monitoring programme. Over 30 emissions from stationary pollution sources are under constant control. The control of the impact on the ambient air outside the company’s territory is performed once a week according to AB “Achema” environment monitoring programme for 2011-2015. The concentration of ammonia, nitrogen oxide, carbon monoxide, ammonia nitrates, CAN dust, urea, and other pollutants in the air is monitored. 

The mainemissions of AB "Achema", 2015

Energy Saving, Air Pollution, and Reduction of the Causes of Climate Change

Due to investments in the modernization of production facilities, improvement of technologies, and reconstruction of cleaning equipment, the company’s pollution level has not been related to the increase of production over the last decades.  

Pollution
Since the start of the third period of trade in emissions in 2013 which will continue until 2020, the greenhouse gases emitted in the course of production of ammonia and nitric acid, i.e. CO2 and N2O, included in the EU Emissions Trading System are subject to emission allowances (EA) in addition to combustion equipment. 
 
The current EU policy on climate change has a considerable impact on AB “Achema”. As the environmental requirements are constantly becoming tighter, our aim is to reduce the EA deficit by installing environmental technologies.  
 
Water Protection 
 
To determine the effect of wastewater emitted to Neris River, the samples of the river water are taken at least once per month – 500 meters before the wastewater discharge pipe and 500 m after the discharge pipe.  
 
A series of parameters is controlled. The measurement results of 2015 are provided in the table.  
 
 
The wastewater emitted to Neris River increased by approx. 2,332.8 thousand m3 due to the increased production volumes in 2015.
 
The control of industrial and domestic wastewater is also performed. In 2015, 462,437 thousand m3 of wastewater was discharged to the treatment facilities of UAB “Jonavos vandenys”, i.e. by 5% more than in 2014. The monitoring of groundwater is also performed.  No significant changes were determined in the concentration of pollutants in 2015. 
 
Waste Treatment 
 
In 2015, the amount of waste delivered for treatment amounted to 982 tons, i.e. by approximately 104 tons (9.5%) less as compared with 2014.
Special recycling dustbins were placed in the company’s units, as well as special containers for utilization of unused small electrical and electronic equipment and batteries. The contracts with specialized companies are concluded for safe management and utilization of waste generated in the production activity. The waste is managed and utilized according to the contracts concluded with UAB “Jonavos paslaugos”, UAB “Skaistuva”, UAB “Žalvaris“, UAB “EMP recycling“, etc.
The company’s units have assigned employees responsible for sorting, packaging, and labelling of waste generated in the units, submission of data for the accounting of waste, proper maintenance of the waste storage places. Every five years, these employees participate in special training and receive course completion certificates according to the waste management programme prepared in Achema Training Center.
 
Participation in Public Initiatives 
 
Since the company’s activity is closely related to water protection and quality, AB “Achema” is actively participating in educational project “Be Responsible – Protect the Baltic Sea”. Pursuant to this project, the Lithuanian farmers are trained on reliable and responsible use of fertilizers, are familiarized with the problems of protection of the Baltic Sea, other objects that are useful in ensuring the sustainability. The project “Be responsible – Protect the Baltic Sea” is implemented by supporting the individual initiatives of companies and citizens of the Baltic Sea Action Summit that took place in Helsinki on 10 February 2010 (159 initiatives are currently realized in all countries of the Baltic Region and their number is constantly increasing).
 
The Company organizes constant meetings with elderships and the community. The information on the environmental monitoring data is provided during 
these meeting and they are attended by company’s management and environmental experts.  
 
In order to draw attention to the environmental protection and preservation culture, AB “Achema” together with the companies of the Group from all regions of the country joins the massive annual social initiative “Let’s Do it!”. 
The company provides publicly relevant information on its website www.achema.lt, in sections “Social Responsibility” and “Environment Protection”.  

Environmental protection achievments

Every year AB "Achema" takes active part in the contest "Environmental Protection Achievements" organized by Lithuanian Ministry of Environment, Engineering Ecology Association, Environment Management and Audit Institute and Confederation of Lithuanian Industrialists. Company's nominations:

Best environmental protection (integrated quality and environmental protection) management system:

  • 2001  - for clear, measurable and efficient environmental protection policy.
  • Most environment-friendly product and process (manufacture):
  • 2001 - for new coagulant BAST (base aluminium sulphate solution).
  • 2004 - for effective natural resource consumption (nitric acid units No 1-6 renovation by implementing new waste gas cleaning technology).
  • 2005 - for effective natural resource consumption (application of base condensate from ammonium nitrate production process for nitric acid production).
  • 2007 - for effective resource consumption and environmental impact reduction within whole product life cycle ("AdBlue", 32.5 % urea solution for nitrogen oxide emission reduction in diesel engine exhauste systems with SCR cleaning systems).
  • 2008 - for contemporary product (nitrogen fertilizer with natural minerals), regarding environmental issues.
  • 2009 - at the National Responsible Business Awards ceremony organized by Lithuanian Academy of Sciences, among the main Lithuanian industry companies, AB "Achema" was acknowledged Environmental Company of the Year. With this award were recognized AB "Achema" efforts to reduce impact on environment, constant attention to energy saving, responsible attitude towards business environment.
  • 2012 - Achema wins Green Company of the Year 2011 award.
  • 2013 - winner of "Environmental Protection Achievements 2012" nomination "Most Environment Friendly Process" for greenhouse gas emission (N2O) mitigation in the nitric acid manufacturing process.