Tata Steel’s Sukinda Chromite Mine rolls out SDF

Sukinda: The Sukinda Chromite Mine (SCM) of Tata Steel in Jajpur district has achieved the rare honour of becoming the first mine in India to roll out a pilot project on Sustainable Development Framework (SDF), a concept proposed and promoted by the Ministry of Mines for the development of culture of sustainable mining in the country.
The SDF was formally launched by Balvinder Kumar, Union secretary, Ministry of Mines on Thursday.

Congratulating Sukinda Chromite Mine for becoming the first mine in the country to initiate the process of SDF, Kumar said this will set an example for other mines to follow for making Indian mining industry more sustainable in days to come.

Speaking on the occasion, Chanakya Chaudhary, Group Director, Corporate Communication and Regulatory Affairs, Tata Steel, said as a responsible corporate, Tata Steel has always been taking measures for sustainable mining with adequate focus on protection of environment, energy conservation, social inclusion and the present recognition is very humbling, puts more responsibility on us to remain ahead of the curve

While Dipak Behera, Head, Mine and Production Planning, Sukinda Chromite Mine, Tata Steel gave a presentation on initiatives of the mine on SDF, Bhagabati Mahanta, chairperson, Sukinda Block, spoke on interaction and involvement of stakeholders with the management of the mine and Gouranga Das, General Secretary, Workers Union on participative management of the mine on the occasion.

Among others, RK Sinha, Controller General of Mines (In-charge), Indian Bureau of Mines (IBM), PN Sharma, Regional Controller of Mines, IBM Hyderabad Region, S Tiu, Controller of Mines, IBM, South Zone, DB Sundara Ramam, Executive-In-Charge, Ferro Alloys and Minerals Division (FAMD),Tata Steel, Pankaj Satija, General Manager (Operations), FAMD, Tata Steel, Rajesh Patel, Chief (Mining), Sukinda Chromite Mine, Tata Steel, Bipul Sharma, Programme Officer, International Union for Conservation of Nature, Ashis Dash, Assistant Director, Federation of Indian Mineral Industries, officers of Tata Steel, SCM workers’ Union, representatives of community, members of local Panachayati Raj Institutions, media persons and others were present.

SDF aims at integrating social, environmental and economic value in decisions and operations of mining companies, in a transparent and accountable manner, thereby acting responsibly and contributing to the well-being of the society with mineral conservation, environment and corporate social responsibility at its core.

The Sukinda Chromite Mine got this honour by fulfilling the intrinsic principles of sustainable mining by integrating sustainable development aspects for corporate decision making process, conducting the business with ethical practices and sound systems of corporate governance, implementing risk management strategies based on valid data with scientific approach, achieving continual improvement in health, safety and environmental performances based on proactive approach, upholding the fundamental human rights and respecting ethnicity, cultures, customs and values in dealing with employees and stakeholders. Integrated approaches for land use planning, responsible use, reuse, research and recovery of mined out materials including associated natural resources with an aim of zero waste mining is being done considering the social, economic and institutional development of the communities with an effective and transparent engagement, communication and reporting arrangements with stakeholders with due consideration to biodiversity management.

In order to develop a complete data base covering the basic principles of sustainable mining, Indian Bureau of Mines (IBM), Bhubaneswar Region has selected the Sukinda Chromite Mine of Tata Steel to espouse the format developed for further deliberations and its customisation for all the mines in the state as well as in the country.

Sukinda Chromite Mine has many “firsts” to its credit. As a pioneer in many aspects in the history of mining industry of the country it was first in the country to discover Chromite ore in the Sukinda valley in 1949, and the first mine to start Chrome Ore Beneficiation Plant ( COBP)in the country in the year 1991. It became the first COBP in India to bag ISO 9001-Quality Management System in 1993.

Raising the bar a notch higher it became the first mine in Asia to bag ISO 9001- Quality Management System in 1994 and its COBP became the first plant in Asia to bag ISO 14001-Environment Management System in 1999. It is also the first mine in the world to bag SA-8000 Social Accountability System in 2004.