Our Operations not Polluting Host Communities, Indorama Insists

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Blessing Ibunge in Port Harcourt

The Indorama Eleme Petrochemicals and Fertilizer Limited has dismissed allegations that its operations are polluting the environment of the host communities.
The Head, Corporate Communication, Indorama – Nigeria, Dr. Jossy Nkwocha, dismissed the allegations yesterday, when some investigative journalists visited the facility in Eleme, Rivers State.

Some individuals from non-host communities had dragged Indorama to a Federal High Court in Port Harcourt, alleging that the operations of the company was causing pollution in the host communities environment.
The matter registered in suit number FHC/PH/CS/23/2024 was adjourned till June 6, 2024, for hearing.
Meanwhile, during the investigative tour on the facility, Dr. Nkwocha said their operationalization is environment-friendly and have been operated under national and international standards.

He said as a responsible organisation, Indorama is committed to the goal of zero harm, safe and healthy environment by implementing effective environment management system as an integral part of their operations.
Nkwocha explained that to achieve their commitment, the company continues to implement a robust environment management and monitoring system, stating that the environmental performance is acknowledged by regulators and lenders.
Listing the key strategies of the company, Nkwocha said: “We are in compliance with all applicable national and state environmental regulations and adherence to good international best practices.

“Environmental performance is the major criteria considered for plant technology selection for new development. The environmental criteria considered are low energy per ton of production, low water consumption and minimum effluent generation, low noise from plant operation, minimal purge, and emissions. Extensive environmental and risk assessment studies and incorporation of recommendations in plant design and operational monitoring.
“It also includes installation of best-in-class available detection and control systems for effective operational control and prompt actions. All pollution abatement equipment is designed for appropriate capacity considering the worst-case scenario. Installed detectors across the plants and all safety devices are designed considering worst-case scenario.

“Before embarking on a new project, detailed Environmental and Social Impact Assessment Study as per the Federal Ministry of Environment guidelines, which is inclusive and covers study of environmental and social components including stakeholder engagement under supervision of Federal Ministry of Environment and Rivers State Ministry of Environment.”
Nkwocha added that periodic preventive maintenance of pollution abatement and pollution control infrastructures is carried out in the facility regularly to ensure optimal functionality.

His words: “We conduct regulatory mandated Environment Audit and Environmental Evaluation study under supervision of relevant regulatory agency reps and submit to relevant authorities for review and approval as per defined frequency.
“We keep our standards for emissions better than Federal Ministry of Environment as the IFC/WB norms are more stringent and we as responsible citizen want to ensure minimum emissions and with that object, we select the best technology and equipment to minimize emissions and make our plants future proof”.
Describing the allegation of pollution as mischievous and misleading, Nkwocha said the firm conducts environmental awareness programs to enhance awareness among employees, contractor workforce and other stakeholders.

Meanwhile, a renowned environmentalist and incumbent President of the Movement for the Survival of Ogoni People (MOSOP), Prof. Wai-Ogosu Olu, who spoke with the journalists during the tour of the facility noted that the company has been doing their operations based on best international practices, ensuring a clean environment.
An Engineer, Mr. Bassey Offiong, at the Steaming Generating Unit of the Olefin Plant, said they consistently monitor the environment, careful not to cause any kind of pollution in the area, including noise pollution.

According to him, “We take good care of our environment because we will be the first victims if we allow pollution in the environment. Environmental monitoring team comes often to monitor our activities”.

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