The PhosAgro Group’s key priorities are to protect the environment and reduce the environmental impact of its operations. We strive to create our fertilizers in a safe and environmentally friendly way, ensuring sustainable growth in agricultural production worldwide.
The main areas of PhosAgro’s Environmental Policy:
By 2025, it will be 0,800 kg/tonne of product
By 2025, it will be 4.4 m³/tonne of product
By 2028, specific greenhouse gas emissions (scope 1) will amount to 109.1 kg in tСО2-eq, which is 30.9% below the 2018 baseline.
up from 27% to 40%
The Company’s Board of Directors determines the Company’s environmental policy and sets strategic goals for environmental safety and environmental impact reduction. Overall management, organisation and coordination of the continuous improvement of the environmental management system is carried out by Apatit’s Department of Ecology and Environmental Management. In order for the Company to fulfil its obligation to continuously improve and reduce its negative environmental impact, it established environmental monitoring and environmental management services at its enterprises and branches. Officials responsible for environmental protection have been appointed to enterprise production units. The production units, which have the greatest environmental impact, have a procedure in place for identifying and assessing risks and opportunities. Based on the results of a risk assessment, we identify the activities that are necessary to bring risks to an acceptable level with respect to significant environmental aspects.
All planning processes in the Company are closely linked to interaction with stakeholders. Public hearings are a legitimate and effective mechanism for establishing dialogue, as stakeholders gather at a discussion platform to express their opinions and proposals regarding initiatives under consideration. This is an effective mechanism and has a positive and constructive impact on the decision-making process. Engaging the general public and an array of stakeholders in discussion is an important step to ensure that all points of view are considered. The list of completed public hearings is available via the Public hearings link.
In November 2020, the Group was awarded a gold medal for its HSE achievements by the International Fertiliser Association (IFA) in recognition of the Company’s advanced occupational health and safety practices. The decision to grant the award was preceded by an IFA audit with an expanded scope of certification as compared to 2019: in addition to the Cherepovets production facility, the Balakovo Branch was also certified.
Managers and specialists responsible for decision-making in the course
of economic or other types of activities that have or may have
a negative impact on the environment are trained through a programme
called “Ensuring environmental safety on the part of managers
(specialists) of general economic management systems”. Class
We ensure regular monitoring of the environmental impact of the Group’s entities in accordance with applicable environmental regulations. Monitoring results are used to identify and assess environmental aspects, identify risks and opportunities, and develop and implement risk management and response measures. The status of environmental risk management is regularly reviewed by PhosAgro’s Board of Directors. Based on the results of regular assessments, the list of risk factors and their features are updated, and additional initiatives and policies are developed.
In order to confirm the compliance of the management system with the requirements of the IFA’s Protect and Sustain and ISO 14001 standard, independent external audits are conducted at planned intervals.
Group enterprises have a special internal audit management procedure in place. Every year, an internal audit programme is developed that takes into account the environmental aspects of the processes being audited, the changes affecting the Company and the results of previous audits. The results of these audits are used as input data for analysing the functioning of the environmental management system on the part of management.
Opportunities for improvement are identified as a result of monitoring, measurement, analysis and assessment related to environmental performance and compliance, audits of the environmental management system and analysis by management. In order to implement the identified opportunities for improvement, including the management and correction of nonconformities, appropriate corrective actions are identified and taken. A procedure for monitoring corrective actions has been established and is now in effect.
The waste management system is a part of PhosAgro Group’s comprehensive
environmental management system. As part of our strategy in this area,
we aim to increase the share of disposed and neutralised waste in hazard
Share of waste (classes
Specific waste generation, tonne/tonne
To achieve this target:
— The Cherepovets branch of our company is upgrading the equipment used in the production of aluminium fluoride. As a result, the following environmental outcomes will be achieved: full use of fluorine extracted from the processing of apatite concentrate; reduction of lime consumption for the neutralisation of effluents; reduction of solid waste.
— Waste utilisation and neutralisation units were put into operation at the Kirovsk branch: a UTD-1 thermal destruction unit and a thermal waste neutralisation unit with high-temperature exhaust gas afterburning. This resulted in the elimination of waste accumulation sites and the complete processing of waste (tires, used railway sleepers, wood)—both our own waste and that accumulated by other regional businesses.
— a technology for phosphogypsum (waste by-product from phosphoric acid production) use in road construction has been developed and implemented. In June 2020, IFA (International Fertilizer Association) included this PhosAgro project in the Phosphogypsum: Leadership, Innovation, Partnership report as an innovative practice in waste by-product management illustrating transition to a circular economy. Read more.
The safe operation of tailings dams, which are special hydraulic engineering facilities designed for storage or burial of mineral processing waste, is of particular importance to the Company.
In accordance with declarations on the safety of hydraulic engineering structures approved in 2018 by the Federal Environmental, Industrial and Nuclear Supervision Service of the Russian Federation, the safety level of the hydraulic structures used for the Company’s tailings is rated as normal (the highest), which means that the structures comply with the design, applicable standards and regulations; the criteria used to measure the level of safety are within the maximum permissible values for the operable condition of structures and foundations; meet safety requirements (for example, refer to the emergency response plan for apatite-nepheline processing plant No. 2 and the emergency response plan for apatite-nepheline processing plant No. 3), operation is carried out without violations of applicable laws, standards and rules; instructions from state oversight and monitoring bodies are fulfilled.
In the absence of reporting standards for the safety of hydraulic structures, PhosAgro actively cooperates with financial institutions that adhere to the principles of responsible investment and also discloses this data.
The main principles of the Company’s emission management system are:
PhosAgro’s strategic goal in this area is to reduce specific emissions by 24% by 2025 as compared to 2018.
Specific emissions, kg\t:
The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment of the Russian Federation, the Federal Service for Supervision of Natural Resources, the Vologda Region Government, and PJSC PhosAgro signed a quadripartite Cooperation Agreement as part of the federal project implementation.
The project aims to drastically reduce air pollution in major industrial centers, including at least 20 percent emissions reduction in the most polluted cities.
Steps taken in 2019-2020 to achieve the target:
In 2019, the Company made a commitment to contribute to the achievement of UN sustainable development goals. SDG 6 Clean Water & Sanitation is an important reference point for us when we plan our activities, increase operational efficiency, and implement lean principles.
Sustainable water management
The Company’s facilities are located in water-rich regions. According to Water Risk Atlas and Water Risk Filter, all our production facilities are located in regions with low and medium water scarcity. However, access to clean water poses a significant challenge on a worldwide scale.
Water management at PhosAgro
Water management is closely related to the specific features of production processes and environmental protection issues. Monitoring of water balance at all stages of the production cycle, from water intake through consumption and use in technological processes to multi-stage treatment and return of water to the environment, is one of the key control elements.
The long-term trend demonstrates a significant reduction in specific rates of both water intake and discharge of wastewater and contaminants.
Specific wastewater discharges, m3/t:
Specific water intake, m3/t:
Specific discharge of contaminants, kg/t:
The Company is committed to preserving the sustainability of natural ecosystems and mitigating the impact on water bodies. We believe in transparency and report all water flows at the facilities to stakeholders in Integrated Report. We also consolidate indicators for previous periods in a data book.
Water withdrawal data analysis shows that the Kirovsk Branch of the Company, where mining operations are conducted, accounts for over 3/4 of all the Company’s water intake. Most of the water withdrawn at the Kirovsk branch is mining, collector and drainage water, being natural water coming from the adjacent territories. The Company diverts this water outside the production facilities without using it.
Significant amounts of mining, collector and drainage water are formed during the spring snowmelt, which largely affects water withdrawal rates: in snowy years (2020), the amount of withdrawn water increases and in less snowy years (2019) decreases, accordingly. For water withdrawal and wastewater discharge details see the Data Book and the 2020 Annual Report.
We have calculated specific water withdrawal and wastewater discharge rates per ton of products and semi-finished products and per million US dollars of revenue with and without mining, collector and drainage water.
|Calculation of gross and specific water withdrawal with and without mining, collector and drainage water||UoM||Total|
|Total water withdrawal from surface sources, incl. mining, collector and drainage water||thou. m3||224,166||190,104||226,592|
|Specific water withdrawal from surface sources, incl. mining, collector and drainage water||m3/т||7.293||5.849||6.676|
|Specific water withdrawal from surface sources, incl. mining, collector and drainage water||m3/mln USD||60,211||49,597||64,263|
|Total water withdrawal from surface sources, excl. mining, collector and drainage water and wastewater from other water disposal systems||thou. m3||116,179||83,510||107,787|
|Specific water withdrawal from surface sources, excl. mining, collector and drainage water and wastewater from other water disposal systems||m3/t||3.513||3.218||3.512|
|Specific water withdrawal from surface sources, excl. mining, collector and drainage water and wastewater from other water disposal systems||m3/mln USD||31,206||21,787||30,569|
|Average specific water withdrawal per million US dollars of revenue (MSCI ESG)||19,525||21,453||2020 data are being processed|
The table below shows wastewater discharge rates calculated with and without mining, collector and drainage water.
|Calculation of gross and specific wastewater discharge with and without mining, collector and drainage water||UoM||Total|
|Total wastewater discharge, incl. mining, collector and drainage water||thou. m3||185,621||152,223||188,455|
|Specific wastewater discharge, incl. mining, collector and drainage water||m3/t||6.04||4.68||5.57|
|Specific wastewater discharge, incl. mining, collector and drainage water||m3/mln USD||49.857||39.714||53.447|
|Total wastewater discharge, excl. mining, collector and drainage water||thou. m3||9,500||5,494||15,901|
|Specific wastewater discharge, excl. mining, collector and drainage water||m3/t||0.31||0.17||0.47|
|Specific wastewater discharge, excl. mining, collector and drainage water||m3/mln USD||2.552||1.433||4.509|
Mining, collector and drainage water is not used in production processes, and are discharged off-site in the same amount. However, they can significantly affect specific water consumption rates.
The company’s water consumption (according to GRI 303-5 requirements) for production purposes remains stable in 2019 and 2020. When considered in conjunction with the annual production growth, this reflects the efficiency of production management processes, as well as careful treatment of water as a valuable resource.
|Total water withdrawal from all sources||thou. m3||224,166||190,104||226,592|
|Total wastewater discharge from all sources||thou. m3||189,656||156,341||192,602|
|Water consumption||thou. m3||34,510||33,763||33,990|
|Water consumption per mln USD of revenue||m3/mln USD||9,269.4||8,808.5||9,639.8|
The efficiency of water management processes is measured by the amount of water in closed technological water supply cycles. Two of the Company’s sites are completely closed-cycle: the Balakovo and Volkhov branches; these production facilities do not discharge wastewater into surface water bodies, and the water withdrawn from the environment is reused multiple times. The table below shows the ratio of closed-cycle processes in the Company as a whole in 2018-2020.
|Total recycled water amount||mln m3||224.0||231.5||240.4|
|Closed-cycle process ratio||%||87||87||88|
2020-2025 Water Strategy
In 2020, the Company has developed a Water Strategy to improve water management efficiency. Its main objectives are as follows:
The Water Strategy contains a list of projects for each branch, including the following investment programs:
These activities are consolidated in a single schedule for their approval in accordance with the procedures adopted in the Company. This schedule comprises an integral part of the Water Strategy.
In early 2021, the Company’s Environmental Policy was amended to include PhosAgro’s obligations to preserve biodiversity, natural landscapes, and ecosystems in the regions where it operates, and to prohibit the activities endangering biodiversity, natural landscapes, and ecosystems in the Company’s project areas.
The Company implements a long-term program aimed at reproduction of aquatic biological resources.
Number of young fish released into water bodies in regions where PhosAgro operates, pcs
Issues of environmental protection and efficient use of the Company’s resources, including those related to climatic aspects of operation, are the Company’s strategic priorities. UN Sustainable Development Goal 13 Climate action is one the basic for the Company; it is integrated in the strategy and current activities of PhosAgro. Particular emphasize is currently put on issues associated with greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and energy efficiency.
Responsibility for reviewing and resolving issues related to climate change is vested in the Health, Safety and Environment Committee headed by the PhosAgro Board of Directors Member and Executive Director. Climatic functions of the Committee include monitoring of greenhouse gas emissions, development and accomplishment of GHG emission reduction projects, including initiatives on improvement of energy efficiency.
Dynamics of GHG gross direct (scope 1) and indirect energy (scope 2) emissions by PhosAgro
Distribution of GHG gross direct (scope 1) and indirect energy (scope 2) emissions by PhosAgro branches for 2019
Dynamics of relative GHG direct emissions, scope 1
Distribution of direct (scope 1) GHG emissions for 2019 by activities
PhosAgro has been putting particular attention to environmental protection for many years, and the new approach to climate-related issues is followed with the support of existing structures, which contributed to the Company’s success for a long period of time. The Company has in place the documented process of identification, assessment, monitoring and management of climatic risks and opportunities as a part of general risk and opportunity management process.
PhosAgro assigns necessary resources for compliance with the provisions of applicable
law and other regulations, such as the adopted Federal Law On Energy Saving and Energy
Efficiency Improvement and Amendments to Certain Legal Acts of the Russian Federation
dated November 23, 2009 No.
In 2019, the Company prepared for the first time the report on management of climatic aspects of activities for 2018 in response online system of Carbon disclosure project (CDP, GHG emission reduction program), which resulted in obtaining the “C” rank.
Furthermore, in 2019, at the Board of Directors approved the goal to reduce the relative GHG emission rate (scope 1) by 2025, as well as a range of measures aimed at achieving that goal.
In 2020, PhosAgro Board of Directors considered and approved the Climatic Strategy, which includes the review of climatic scenarios according to TCFD (Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures) guidelines, identification of climatic risks and opportunities, definition of scientifically substantiated target rates of GHG emissions, as well as measures of achieving them — a low-carbon transition plan.
Moreover, the Climatic Strategy describes provisions on interaction with value chain stakeholders, including the conception of the supplier management plan. The main goal of interaction is control over GHG emissions along the entire value chain for obtaining necessary data enabling the Company to regulate internal corporate processes and actions and influence on main suppliers and consumers in the field of GHG emission reduction.
In 2020, the Company submitted to CDP the report for 2019, which includes detailed information on all such aspects.
PhosAgro priorities in implementing the Climatic Strategy:
PhosAgro Climatic Strategy is a new level of the Company’s responsibility to the global community and future generations, as well as a prerequisite for sustainable business development in contemporary world.
Energy efficiency Program
Sustainable Development Committee pays great attention to the synergy of aspects of sustainable development. We understand that energy efficiency and greenhouse gases emissions are closely related.
Therefore, in August 2020 an Energy Efficiency Program was approved. Program combine projects that are under implementation and perspective initiatives. All of them are focused on energy conservation, reduction of energy consumption and energy losses, as well as the Company's pilot project in the field of renewable energy - solar power plant construction in Balakovo.
In line with principles of corporate sustainability, PhosAgro Group reviews potential suppliers for compliance with environmental and social requirements enshrined in the Company’s Code of Conduct for Counterparties.
Work to ensure the environmental safety of raw materials and supplies procured by Company enterprises is carried out in the following areas:
Monitoring incoming purchased products
The Company produces, on an annual basis, a list of industrial products subject to incoming inspection. For chemical products, Safety Data Sheet is the document containing information about their environmental and toxicological safety characteristics. Safety Data Sheets of chemical products are reviewed by dedicated expert organizations and comprise an obligatory part of technical documentation for chemical products; they are designed to provide the consumer with reliable information on the safety of industrial and household use, storage, transportation, and disposal of chemical products. The Safety Data Sheet contains reliable information in an accessible and concise form, sufficient for a consumer to take necessary measures to ensure the protection of human health and safety at work and environmental protection at all stages of chemical products life cycle. Quality tests are carried out by the Quality Control Department. If necessary, samples may be sent to accredited third parties to perform tests in respect of the parameters covered by their accreditation.
Requirements for suppliers
— Request for confirmation of product quality by providing a Safety Data Sheet, the conclusions of technical oversight departments, ISO 9001:2011 certificates on the quality management system (ISO 9001:2008, ETA, MSDS technical regulations);
— Requirements for the use of materials and equipment that meet Russian quality standards (regulations), that have a manufacturer’s certificate and that are approved for use in Russia;
The requirement to comply with the rules for the storage and transportation of goods by motor transport and by train, as set out in the relevant regulations.
Additional inspections will be arranged if the subject matter of a tender requires such inspections. Group specialists perform the necessary expert evaluation, which may include a request to confirm that potential contractors have the necessary production capacities and technologies, relevant professional qualifications, licences, certificates (including ISO certificates) and technical auditors’ reports. The person in charge of the environmental management system provides a report on an acceptable decision from the point of view of environmental safety.
In 2020, PhosAgro took the following actions to implement its environmental responsibility principles in practice:
The following steps are planned for 2021:
In order to promote its products in the marketplace, the Company uses the slogan “Clean minerals for healthy lives” (highlighting the unique purity of its fertilizers) and cooperates closely with agricultural producers.
PhosAgro’s vertically integrated business model is an inherent advantage. In terms of the extraction and processing of raw materials, we have our own extensive and high-quality resource base with a minimum of contaminants. When it comes to manufacturing our final product, the Group’s entities are located close to the main raw materials required for fertilizer production, such as natural gas and sulphur.
PhosAgro’s largest company, Apatit, has a dynamically developing business process model, and it applies the best international practices covered by ISO 9001, ISO 14001, OHSAS 18001 and GMP+ standards.
Targets have been set for all production processes evaluation criteria and oversight methodologies have been specified.
Fertilizers produced by Apatit are supplied to over 100 countries, widely used in agricultural production for the main, pre-sowing application, as well as top dressing, and are effective on different types of soils.
Fertilizers are made from phosphate ore of magmatic origin unique in its purity, and do not contain hazardous impurities in excess of the permitted thresholds. Fertilizer quality and safety are confirmed by test reports issued by certified laboratories.
Apatit obtains permits for all types of fertilizers in due time to increase public confidence in the safety of the company’s operations and products.
The Company’s products exported to EU countries are registered in accordance with European Commission Regulation (EC) No 1907/2006 on Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH). State registration certificates, declarations of conformity, and safety certificates confirm the quality of mineral fertilizers produced. Environmental and toxicological safety, as well as the effectiveness of new fertilizer brands, have been confirmed in the course of expert reviews. Products are properly classified, labelled and packaged in accordance with EC Regulation No 1272/2008 (CLP Regulation).
Mineral fertilizers produced by Apatit are subject to mandatory state registration of agrochemicals by the Russian Ministry of Agriculture. The compliance of all brands of Apatit’s mineral fertilizers registered in Russia with the safety requirements was confirmed by the Federal Service for Supervision of Natural Resources (Rosprirodnadzor), the Federal Service for Surveillance on Consumer Rights Protection and Human Wellbeing (Rospotrebnadzor), and the Ministry of Agriculture during registration tests to assess the biological effectiveness of agrochemicals, toxicological and hygienic assessment, and assessment of environmental impact.
Apatit carries out regular comprehensive experimental research to assess agronomic efficiency, ecological and toxicological safety of fertilizer application. The research involves the assessment of the impact of fertilizers on the content of toxic elements and nitrates in plants, as well as agrochemical studies of samples:
— soil, for active forms of phosphorus, sulfur, acidity (pH), gross heavy metal (lead, cadmium, mercury, arsenic) content before and after the trial, and after harvesting.
— surface water, for nitrate ions, phosphate ions, potassium, sulfates, toxic elements before the trial and after harvesting.
Moreover, certified centers conduct studies of groundwater and bottom sediments of surface water bodies to fully assess the impact of fertilizers on the ecosystem in the course of application.
For example, in 2020, Federal State Budgetary Institution State Agrochemical Service Center Vologodsky conducted similar studies when applying nitrogen-phosphorus-potassium sulphur-containing fertilizer grades NPK (S) 10-20-10 (3) and NPK (S) 12-15-21(8) in the experimental field sown with spring barley. Comprehensive ecosystem studies have shown no impact on surface and groundwater, bottom sediments, soil, and crop products. The monitored indicators are below the thresholds stipulated by the law.
Agrochemical centers and organizations under the jurisdiction of the
Russian Ministry of Agriculture conduct regular local agro-ecological
monitoring of agricultural land in different soil and climate zones.
Samples of ground and surface water, soil, and vegetation are taken as part
of the monitoring. The agro-ecological monitoring conducted in
— the content of toxic elements in all types of crop products (grain, straw, potatoes, silage crops, hay) is significantly below the permitted thresholds.
— the applied mineral fertilizers have no significant impact on pollutant content in natural water and soil.
The practice of Apatit fertilizer application supported by laboratory tests shows that there is no contamination of environmental elements when fertilizers are applied in the recommended doses in accordance with sustainable agriculture principles. The positive determinations of the authorized ministries and departments confirm the safety of Apatit fertilizers for the people and the environment.
The Balakovo branch of JSC Apatit, Russia’s only enterprise producing feed monocalcium phosphate (FMP), was the first Russian company to successfully pass the GMP+B2 European Quality Control of Feed Materials in 2008; the Cherepovets site was certified for compliance with the GMP+B1 Feed Safety Management System in 2018 in order to produce and sell feed urea to the EU.
PhosAgro is constantly searching for product innovations, both through its own developments based on experience and knowledge of the industry, and in cooperation with the Y. Samoilov Research Institute of Fertilizers and Insectofungicides. For example, Apatit’s Quality Control Department has a technological laboratory responsible for studying the market for new reagents, searching for and developing new products and services together with consumers and partners.
Certification according to international standards ISO 9001:2015, ISO 14001:2015, OHSAS 18001, GMP+ confirms the compliance of the management system at all stages of the product life cycle. PhosAgro conducts regular internal and external audits to assess the Group’s compliance with these standards and to obtain the above certificates. The company successfully confirms compliance with international standards every year.
In September 2020, we once again were certified for compliance with the IFA’s Protect and Sustain standard. The IFA, with the support of SGS, developed this standard in 2010 for IFA companies in order to ensure that their products comply with high standards of quality, safety and reliability through the introduction of best industry practices and technologies.
The Company is a member of the IFA and the International Plant Nutrient Institute. We actively participate in Russian and international meetings, seminars, exhibitions, conferences and forums on issues related to agriculture and fertilizers (Golden Autumn, St. Petersburg Economic Forum, Eastern Economic Forum, a Chemistry exhibition, International Green Week Berlin and events organised by the Russian Fertilizer Producers Association of), where we share best practices with our customers by providing individual recommendations for fertilizer application and provide samples of new products to consumers.
The company aims to reduce the negative environmental impact both in production and use of its products, as well as in transportation of goods, by implementing green initiatives in logistics.
We take care of our employees and implement significant educational, medical, youth-related and professional sports
We are building an effective and transparent governance structure based on equality of shareholders, responsibility and accountability of each governance body, leadership and independence of the Board of Directors, and a corporate culture that does not tolerate any form of corruption or discrimination