abusesaffiliationarrow-downarrow-leftarrow-rightarrow-upattack-typeburgerchevron-downchevron-leftchevron-rightchevron-upClock iconclosedeletedevelopment-povertydiscriminationdollardownloademailenvironmentexternal-linkfacebookfiltergenderglobegroupshealthC4067174-3DD9-4B9E-AD64-284FDAAE6338@1xinformation-outlineinformationinstagraminvestment-trade-globalisationissueslabourlanguagesShapeCombined Shapeline, chart, up, arrow, graphLinkedInlocationmap-pinminusnewsorganisationotheroverviewpluspreviewArtboard 185profilerefreshIconnewssearchsecurityPathStock downStock steadyStock uptagticktooltiptwitteruniversalityweb

Diese Seite ist nicht auf Deutsch verfügbar und wird angezeigt auf English

Der Inhalt ist auch in den folgenden Sprachen verfügbar: English, Русский


6 Dez 2021

Татьяна Брицкая, Новая Газета

Russia: Nornickel closes plant in Murmansk, leaving the question of who will clean up polluted environment & where former employees would go; incl. co. comments

Alle Tags anzeigen Anschuldigungen

[Translation prepared by Business & Human Rights Resource Centre]

“I’m exchanging my apartment for an iPhone.” How does a village live that Norilsk Nickel no longer needs, 6 December 2021

..."Norilsk Nickel" - the main taxpayer of the Murmansk region, which was the full owner here, considered the further work of the plant inappropriate...

Every year, three times more sulfur dioxide flew into the sky over Nikel than the whole of Norway emits in a year, this became the main environmental problem of its neighbours.

It got to the point that the Sør-Varanger commune had to set up an automatic warning system for residents about the excess of toxic substances in the air: on such days they were advised to stay at home and not visit the Pasvik Valley, where the wind was blowing deadly clouds from Russia...

In 2001, the Norwegians allocated 32 million euros in the form of a grant and a 10-year loan of $10 million for the environmental modernisation of Pechenganikel. A few years later, Norilsk Nickel simply returned the money.

When closing the plant, Norilsk Nickel's PR team focused specifically on the environment: the company's main mission was to reduce the burden on the environment. At the same time, another factor remained on the sidelines, which former employees of the plant talk about - the plant was so outdated that there was no point in operating it further, in addition, ore reserves in the area are no longer so large, in a few years there may be talk of closing the mine “Kaula-Kotselvaara". There is no point in maintaining a plant that requires expensive reconstruction.

However, the official position of Norilsk Nickel is different. In response to a request from Novaya Gazeta, the company stated that “the shutdown of the smelting shop is provided for by Norilsk Nickel’s comprehensive environmental program, designed to significantly reduce the environmental impact at all production sites,” and also that “the Kaula-Kotselvaara mine is provided with production facilities task for the next five years, further plans will be clarified taking into account the company’s production plans and the market situation."

At first, the main problem was the fate of 660 workers. To be left without a salary in a depressed village is death...

As a result, people were partially employed - after moving - in other Nornickel's plants, and the rest were paid good compensation.

Two other questions remain: what will happen to the village and who will eliminate the accumulated environmental damage? The concept of development of the village and region had to answer them.

It is still available on the company’s website...In February, based on this concept, a program for the socio-economic development of the Pechenga Municipal District until 2025 was adopted. Residents are promised a metallurgical mini-plant, an enterprise for the production of abrasive materials, a plant for processing recyclable materials, a trout farm and a dairy farm...

A new life began almost immediately: in March the village was left without water...