OREANDA-NEWS. February 3, 2012. EuroChem, one of the worlds top ten agrochemical companies, announced today that the Northwestern Federal District Centre of Laboratory Analysis and Technical Metrology has completed the testing of effluent samples taken at its Phosphorit phosphate plant in Northwest Russia. The results and conclusions of the testing confirm Phosphorits internal laboratory results and effectively rule out any direct link between the plants activity and the increases in the phosphorous levels of the Luga River and Baltic Sea.

The tests were performed following the publication of Finnish news reports in January reporting on the possible contamination of the Baltic Sea by industrial wastewater in which EuroChems Phosphorit plant was mentioned as a potential source of phosphorous contamination. On January 25, in accordance with its environmental accountability policy, EuroChem welcomed delegations of Finnish and Russian environmental organizations, community leaders, as well as Saint Petersburg and Helsinki media outlets at its Phosphorit plant to openly conduct the sampling and testing of surface runoffs. In addition to collecting samples of water from industrial discharge points and alleged areas of high contamination levels, the participants received detailed information on the facilitys operations and EuroChems environmental projects and initiatives. The conclusions of these tests highlighted the absence of any link between the activity of the Phosphorit facility and the reported increases in phosphorous concentration in the Luga River and Baltic Sea. Representatives of the Baltic Marine Environment Protection Commission (HELCOM) in Russia concurred with these findings.

To continue studying this issue until it is resolved, EuroChem and HELCOM experts agreed on the implementation of a joint research program during the January 25 meeting. To push the dialogue further, EuroChem has invited representatives of Finnish and Russian environmental agencies and regulatory bodies to the Phosphorit plant on February 7 to develop a program to evaluate and, if necessary, address the regions environmental situation.

Since acquiring the Phosphorit facility in 2002, EuroChem has proceeded with investments of USD 43 million in environmental protection measures in the area. These investments significantly improved the regions environmental indicators with a recorded threefold decline in atmospheric emissions and a reduction in effluent volumes by a factor of 7.5. EuroChem is currently implementing its strategic environmental protection program which runs through 2015 and encompasses the overhaul of the wastewater treatment facility and further measures to reduce industrial discharges to the Luga River Basin.

EuroChem is a top ten agrochemical company globally by nutrient capacity, producing primarily nitrogen and phosphate fertilizers, as well as certain organic synthesis products and iron ore.

EuroChems main manufacturing assets include the Nevinnomysskiy Azot, Novomoskovskiy Azot, Phosphorit, EuroChem BMU, and Kovdorskiy GOK facilities in Russia and Lifosa in Lithuania. The Group is vertically integrated with activities spanning from mining to production, logistics, and distribution. EuroChem holds licenses to develop potash reserves in Russia which entitle it to an estimated fifth-largest volume of potash reserves globally.