OREANDA-NEWS. NLMK Group (LSE: NLMK), the largest steel producer in Russia and one of the most efficient steel companies in the world, is launching an important environmental project at its Lipetsk site. The project involves the reconstruction of de-dusting systems at Blast Furnace #6, which has a capacity of 3.2 million tonnes of pig iron per year.

The project will provide a more than six-fold reduction in dust emissions from the furnace, bringing down overall dust emissions from Novolipetsk blast furnace operations by more than 20%.

As part of the project, NLMK Group has signed a contract for engineering works and supply of equipment. The plan is to replace several de-dusting systems: at the casting yard; the trestle; the receiver; the breeze bins; and to install next generation bag filters in place of the electric filters currently in use.

Sergey Filatov, Novolipetsk Managing Director, said:

“As a result of the reconstruction, de-dusting efficiency will increase by a factor of six to 5 mg/m3. This represents the best residual dust concentration indicator across blast furnace de-dusting systems in Russian steelmaking. This project takes the plant to a qualitatively new level of environmental technologies. And we are going to continue implementing the most advanced technologies as part of our Environmental Programme 2020 to radically decrease our environmental footprint.”

Reconstruction of de-dusting systems at NLMK’s second largest blast furnace by capacity will be completed by 2018. Project investment will total RUB2.1 billion.

About Environmental Programme 2020

In May 2014, NLMK Group announced the launch of the third stage of its environmental programme, covering the period up to 2020 (Environmental Programme 2020). This programme is part of the Group’s development strategy and investment programme. It is aimed at further minimizing our environmental footprint and achieving the best possible environmental standards in global steel production.

Investments in environmental initiatives and projects at NLMK Group companies will total RUB10.6 billion. Most of the funds will be invested at NLMK’s Lipetsk production site, a core asset of the Group.

Environmental Programme 2020 will ensure:

• compliance with all environmental standards by all enterprises within the Group;

• reduction in specific emissions at NLMK’s Russian sites to comply with the level of the best available technologies in the global steel industry;

• zero waste water discharge at all Group sites;

• increase in waste recycling from 5% to 25%;

• complete elimination of waste accumulated over previous years (in particular, the slag heap formed at the Lipetsk site over the last 80 years, and the sludge dump at NSMMZ (Revda) that has been there for over 40 years).

About NLMK Group

NLMK Group is the largest steelmaker in Russia and one of the most efficient in the world. NLMK’s metal products are used in various industries, from construction and engineering to the manufacture of power-generating equipment and offshore wind turbines.

NLMK's production assets are located in Russia, Europe, and the United States. The Company’s liquid steel production capacity is over 17 million tonnes per year, of which about 16 million tonnes are produced in Russia.

NLMK has the most competitive cash cost among global manufacturers; and one of the highest profitability levels in the sector. The company generated $6.371 billion in revenue; $1.63 billion in EBITDA; and a net profit of 891 million in 9M 2015. Net Debt/EBITDA is 0.5. The company has a BBB- credit rating. NLMK’s ordinary shares are traded on the Moscow Stock Exchange (ticker symbol: NLMK), and its global depositary shares are traded on the London Stock Exchange (ticker symbol: NLMK:LI).

About Novolipetsk (NLMK’s main production site in Lipetsk)

Novolipetsk is the main production site of NLMK Group, Russia’s leading manufacturer of steel and high value added rolled products, and one of the most efficient steelmaking companies in the world. Novolipetsk is the nucleus of NLMK Group’s single production chain, with assets in Russia, the EU and the USA. The steel production volume of the Lipetsk site is approximately 18% of all steel produced in Russia, and approximately 80% of all steel products produced by NLMK Group.

Novolipetsk’s high-quality steel products are used in various strategically important industries, from construction and engineering to the manufacture of power-generating equipment and large-diameter pipes. Novolipetsk produced 12.56 million tonnes in 2014. This represents an all-time high over the 80 years of NLMK’s history. This record performance was supported by productivity improvements throughout the value chain of the site. With capacities running at 100%, production grew by 1.3% compared to 2013.