Vedanta celebrates World Environment Day
Hindustan Zinc part of Vedanta Group achieves milestone and becomes a water positive company
New Delhi / Mumbai: Vedanta Limited, one of the world’s leading Oil & Gas and Metals Company has a host of initiatives focusing on themes such as water, energy and carbon management. The group has adopted advanced technologies to optimise water consumption, enhance energy productivity, mitigate climate change and safeguard diversity through their group companies including Hindustan Zinc (HZL), Cairn Oil & Gas, Electrosteels Steel, Sesa Iron Ore Business and Vedanta Aluminium.
Celebrating World Environment Day, Hindustan Zinc part of Vedanta, acquired the unique distinction of becoming a water positive company. The company has become 2.41 times water positive with respect to the water consumed, making it one of the top water conserving companies globally. HZL is already ranked 1st in sustainability in Asia Pacific by the Dow Jones Sustainability Index.
Speaking on the occasion of World Environment Day, Mr. Sunil Duggal, Group CEO, Vedanta Group said, “We have a long-term approach to water management that aims to improve our performance, recognize the significance of water and contribute to sustainable water management. This certification is a testimony to the efforts that our team has put over the years. We will continue our journey by continuously improving this score.”
Vedanta believes that water conservation is a collective responsibility and is a non-negotiable aspect for sustainable development. While there is abundance of water, only 4 per cent is suitable for human consumption and that makes conservation of water so crucial.
Focusing on its sustainability pillars of zero harm, zero waste, zero discharge, Vedanta has generated 1,653 units of renewable energy, while solar power projects are being commissioned to produce 22 MW of power. Around 92 per cent of the high-volume low effect wastes such as fly ash, slag and jarosite are being recycled. Vedanta is committed to green mining and the company has been adopting global approaches across businesses to reduce the carbon footprint.
Credited as one of the greenest power plants in the country, TSPL accounts for 30% of Punjab’s power requirement and operates on a higher cycle efficiency with less Green House Gases (GHG) emission, less water consumption and less auxiliary power consumption vis a vis other thermal power plants in the country. In the pursuit of its goal of Zero Waste, TSPL has adopted world-class technology to ensure zero harm to the environment. It has boilers equipped with low NOx burners and the separate overfire air (SOFA) system ensures very low NOx emissions.
Cairn Oil and Gas has been working closely with the district administration, government agencies and experts to not only keep the environmental footprint at the minimum level, but also to expand the green belt area in Barmer. The focus has been on preserving the biodiversity, which is the central theme for Environment Day 2020, so that the many endangered species in the region are protected.
Electrosteels Steel (ESL) the recent acquisition of the group is no exception in managing sustainability and has done significant work to improve the environmental performance of the company. From reutilising only 10% of the generated fly-ash, ESL has been able to utilize 100% of the generated volumes. This has been achieved by establishing sales agreement for fly-ash with cement companies, where the by-product is used in several blended-cement applications. In FY2020, ESL transferred ~108,000 MT of fly-ash to cement companies. A similar success story has been achieved with Blast-Furnace Slag, where ESL has increased reutilization levels from 30% to 100% of the generated waste.
At Sesa Iron Ore Business, the reclamation of the Sanquelim mine is a role model for sustainability and effective restoration of environment. There has been complete restoration of mining pits into pisciculture with numerous species of flora & fauna along with development of aquatic ecosystem. The Sankhali mine is perfect blend of community development and biodiversity conservation and the existing infrastructure is utilized for the development of community project like the Sesa Technical School and residential football academy.
Livelihood programs are central to the community development activities undertaken by Vedanta. The agriculture support program managed by the BALCO CSR team provides soil testing, fencing infrastructure, fertilizer and seed-based input support, and technical training programs. This intervention has motivated several farmers to adopt modern farming techniques such as System of Rice Intensification (SRI), which has doubled yields and enhanced incomes. Many farmers have also diversified their crops, further enhancing family incomes.
The Jharsuguda plant has adopted a “safety booster” program for its employees (Vedanta & Business Partners) to ensure and enhance safety behaviour. Employees are regularly provided counselling sessions, safety training, and regular reviews of their performance. This approach has allowed several employees to continuously self-correct on the shop-floor which has improved the overall safety culture at the plant.