The Polish companies of the Group operate in compliance with environmental laws. The companies that are obliged to do so hold valid permits to use the environment, except for the entities described below.
The company Uzdrowiska Kłodzkie S.A. – PGU Group does not have a water rights permit for discharging bathing waters from the Natural Medicine Centre in Polanica-Zdrój. Because of this the fee paid by the company for the discharge of such waste water is 500% higher. There is also no water rights permit for the discharge of excess mineral water from the “Pieniawa Józefa I” and “Pieniawa Józefa II” intakes. The discharge of that water to the river is not subject to charges. In order to resolve the formal and legal aspects of this situation, in terms of obtaining a water rights permit for the discharge of the aforementioned water to the river, the Company is engaged in discussions with the Polanica-Zdrój Town Hall, which is the owner of the sewage system.
Uzdrowiska Kłodzkie S.A. – the PGU Group awaits granting of a water rights permit to discharge after-bathing water from the Natural Treatment Resort and the discharge excess mineral water from the “Górne” intake in Kudowa-Zdrój. In October 2019, the Company appealed against the Decision received, due to the classification of unutilised mineral water from the “Górne” intake as industrial effluents. In 2020, a decision was handed down by the State Polish Waters Board – the Water Board in Nysa, against which the Company appealed to the Regional Director of the Water Board in Wrocław, through the Director of the Water Board in Nysa. The Company awaits the final decision of the Regional Water Board Director in Wrocław.
The discharge of industrial effluents from the Mineral Water Bottling Plant no. II in Polanica-Zdrój to the municipal sewage system has not been regulated by law. The Miejski Zakład Komunalny (municipal services office) in Polanica-Zdrój did not respond to the company’s request for the clarification of conditions for the discharge of industrial waste to the municipal sewage system due to the lack of a signed agreement. The company is also considering building a waste treatment plant on the grounds of the bottling plant.
Amongst the domestic companies of the Group, the largest environmental impact comes from the activities of “Energetyka” Sp. z o.o. In 2020, this company incurred the highest environmental charges. They amounted to PLN 2.8 million and mainly comprised payments for water intake and wastewater discharge (PLN 2.4 million), and for pollutant emissions into the air (approx. PLN 0.4 million). In 2020, the Company was fined for having exceeded in 2018 the permissible limits of dust emissions into the air from the Polkowice Heat and Power Plant, and for the discharge in 2018 of wastewater from the W-4 Division wastewater treatment plant in Legnica to the Pawłówka (Białynia) stream, which was in breach of the terms and conditions of the relevant integrated permit.
In 2020, the Company pursued investment projects with the aim to:
- Adapt the existing equipment and installations of the Polkowice heat and power plant to the IED Directive emission requirements and the so-called BAT Conclusions
- Modernize two steam boilers at the Głogów Division – adaptation to new technological conditions and processes as a result of discontinuation of top gas burning (the modernisation consists in adaptation of the equipment to new fuel for the boiler, from top gas to natural gas enriched with nitrogen) to the extent necessary to ensure supply of steam reserve for the Głogów Copper Smelter and Refinery, heat supply to the city of Głogów and increased electricity supply to the Głogów Copper Smelter and Refinery
- Modernize the industrial effluent distribution chamber at the Legnica Division – to ensure continuity of production at the Legnica Copper Smelter and Refinery and increase the effectiveness of industrial effluents treatment
Due to the specific nature of its production (explosives, initiation systems, fuel additives), the NITROERG S.A. Company has an impact on the environment. The environmental charges incurred by the company in 2020 amount to PLN 0.3 million. In April 2020, there was an emergency incident in the Krupski Młyn plant, involving a leak of hazardous substance into the environment, i.e. the Mała Panew river. NITROERG S.A. took immediate action and the environmental effects of the incident have been effectively removed, which was verified by an ad hoc inspection of the Voivodeship Inspectorate of Environmental Protection. As a result of the incident, the State Polish Waters Board (PGW Wody Polskie) imposed an increased charge on the Company, of PLN 60 thousand. The charge has been paid.
As part of its environmental investment projects in 2020, KGHM ZANAM S.A. launched a photovoltaic power plant at the Legnica Plant. The project is designed to significantly reduce the contribution of the Plant to air pollution, by switching to environmentally friendly in-house energy production from the existing supply source of the Legnica Copper Smelter and Refinery.