Planning Commission deputy chairperson Mr. Montek Singh Ahluwalia and Union minister of State (Independent Charge) for Environment and Forests, Smt. Jayanthi Natarajan, presented the Three Leaves Award to Essar Steel Ltd., Hazira, Gujarat, at a function in New Delhi on 4 June 2012.
At a time when the Indian iron and steel industry is struggling to meet green norms, Essar Steel India Ltd., Hazira emerged as a silver lining in the dark cloud by winning the Three Leaves Award, highest among the Indian Steel Plants, instituted by the Centre for Science and Environment’s (CSE) Green Rating Project (GRP), a project sponsored by Ministry of Environment & Forest and UNDP, for its green credentials. The company has received this recognition, further to its adherence and in-depth assessment of the 150 parameters, such as stakeholder perception, technology to process efficiency, pollution to occupational health and safety, percentage of carbon emission and solid waste disposal, usage of electricity and water, efficient use of land and so on.
Commenting on this award, Mr. Dilip Oommen, CEO and MD, Essar Steel India, said, “We are very happy that our environmental performance is being recognized and rated by the prestigious CSE, a leading NGO of India. Essar Steel remains committed to the cause of environment. This is a journey that we would like to continue till we become at par with the global best. We have already identified the areas for improvement and we are working towards achieving it."
The results of the study were released by Mr. Montek Singh Ahluwalia and Smt. Jayanthi Natarajan, in New Delhi on the eve of World Environment Day. The rating assessment is based on the two years of research conducted by CSE’s Green Rating Project, based on which Essar Steel, Hazira, including its Vizag and Kirandul facilities, stood at No. 2 among 21 top steelmakers. During the research, Hazira plant was found to be low on specific energy and water consumption, lowest GHG emitter and reuses steel melting slag. Ms. Sunita Narain, director general of CSE, complemented Essar Steel for their efforts against the economic odds. Despite challenges such as not having captive mines, allocation of gas, good quality raw material, etc., their environmental performance is far better compared to the steel plants which do not have these constraints.
The CSE’s Green Rating Project analyzed the top steelmaking plants in the country to find out how "green and clean" the sector is — how many resources it uses, how much it emits, how it disposes its wastes, and how it deals with issues of local communities. On the basis of its findings, the Project also confers the Five Leaves Awards on the plants which are rated the most environmentally friendly. In the case of the iron and steel sector, 21 companies, with at least 0.5 million tonnes of annual capacity, were rated in this program. Essar Steel, a 14 MMTPA global producer of steel, is a fully integrated flat carbon steel manufacturer with presence in Canada, USA, India and Indonesia. It makes pipes and extra wide plates, as well as hot rolled, cold rolled, galvanized and color-coated steel.