At the moment of joining the International Fund for Agricultural Development in 1980, China was a relatively poor country, struggling with the task of providing food for its numerous population. Then, over the following 35 years, the importance of Chinese agriculture in the global economy has risen dramatically.
The 10th edition of “A Tree for a Bottle” competition is about to come to an end. The event has been organized annually since 2003 and forms a part of Responsible Care Program. The key target of the project is increasing environmental awareness among children, who receive tree seedlings in return for plastic bottles they have collected.
Negotiations concerning the signing of Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) are to start in 2014. The parties of the agreement are the European Union and the USA. The partnership will help lift barriers in the traffic of goods and services between Europe and the USA. The development appears beneficial for business, but at the same time arouses some fears.
The European Union observes stringent standards connected with the protection of climate and the natural environment from the negative impact of industrial activity. Restrictions introduced by the EU bodies are mainly based on REACH (Registration, Evaluation and Authorisation of Chemicals) regulation, which specifies the rules of application and trade of particular chemicals, and a climate convention regulating CO2 production and trade. However, in US legislation there are no analogous regulations on chemical substances. Nor have the USA agreed to observe international protocols on greenhouse gases emissions.
Access to resources
Most European producers of chemicals, of artificial fertilizers in particular, depend on the imports of natural gas, which is indispensable for fertilizer manufacturing. By contrast, US enterprises enjoy access to gas which is three times cheaper and comes from shale deposits. If free trade is introduced, there might appear an issue with the protection of the EU market from inexpensive American goods.
As a result, fertilizer manufacturers from North America and the European Union would compete on unfair basis. Unless the Partnership involves a caveat against such a situation, the EU market might become dependent on American products, posing a threat to the food supply safety on the Old Continent. Ironically, American companies could eliminate EU manufacturers despite the fact that European installations are frequently more efficient and the norms regarding environment protection are observed much more strictly on our continent.
Four bids submitted in the tender were opened in the office of “Puławy” Power Plant Company on January 31st, 2014, at noon. This formal step brings us closer to the implementation of this investment, which is of crucial importance to us. “Puławy” Power Plant will neighbor with Grupa Azoty “PUŁAWY” premises, one of the entities implementing the project. The other partner is PGE Górnictwo i Energetyka Konwencjonalna S.A.
Launch of the construction in 2015
The construction of “Puławy” Power Plant is scheduled for 2015. However, in 2014 we are going to know name of the contractor chosen in the current tender procedure. Four companies which have made preliminary offers include Alstom Power, General Electric International, Siemens and SNC-Lavalin.
Energy for growth
The construction of a combined cycle power plant is an essential investment for our Works, being in line with the environmentally-friendly strategy of the company. The start-up of “Puławy” Power Plant will not only help decrease the electricity deficit in Lubelskie voivodeship, but also improve energy supply safety in the whole country.
A few weeks ago we witnessed an unusual ornithological event on the company premises. For the first time in Lubelskie voivodeship’s documented history, a Peregrine Falcon clutched. It happened on one of the factory chimneys.
The birds have lived on a chimney belonging to Grupa Azoty “PUŁAWY” since 2005, when representatives of “Falcon” Wildlife Association fixed the first booth with a nest, in cooperation with our staff. Eight years since that event, we may take pride in the first official falcon clutch in our voivodeship.
Ornithologists are confident that Puławy offers perfect habitat for Peregrine Falcon. Two factors are crucial here: proximity of forests such as Puszcza Kozienicka and neighboring wild Vistula riverbanks.
Specialists have observed migrations of falcons in our town for years. However, no birds have settled on the chimney till now.
Taking care of the environment
It took over 10 days to confirm that young falcons had clutched. Initially, birdwatchers spotted an adult falcon carrying its prey to the nest a few times. This raised the interest of ornithologists, who soon after saw young falcons peeking out of the booth.
It is worth noting that the event is of great importance for the development of falcon population in our country. Currently there are as few as 20 falcon nests in Poland. Due to the use of toxic pesticides, a large proportion of falcon population was killed in Central Eastern Europe 50 years ago. At the moment efforts are made to restore the species’ population in Poland. “PUŁAWY” joined the program by consenting to have a booth with a nest placed on one of the chimneys.
Plenty of green areas and forests are located around Puławy. Hardly any local inhabitant would approve any change to this environment. Since the launch of the Works, we have been paying particular attention to care of the natural environment and at the same time, to the welfare of the local community. Today being environment-friendly is a priority for Azoty Group “PUŁAWY”.
Investment in the environment
In 1980′ a waste treatment plant was erected next to caprolactam installation, where one of the main materials for the production of artificial fibers is manufactured. The plant made it possible to offset the damage of the production line for the environment.
In 1985 – 2000 we implemented a comprehensive program of environmental protection, in which we voluntarily vowed to abide by the strictest formal requirements concerning emissions of polluting substances and the impact Works are having on the environment.
Awards for being environment-friendly
With regard to taking care of the environment, “PUŁAWY” constitutes a role model for other enterprises. As a proof, we may offer much more than our own declarations; also numerous awards and honorary mentions, such as:
A nomination in “Well-Seen Company” (“Firma Dobrze Widziana”) competition for our environmental protection and social activity, as confirmed by the members of the local community.
Acanthus Aureus Medal for a stand at International Environmental Protection Fairs in 2011.
Since 1995 “PUŁAWY” has been participating in an international program whose Polish name is Responsible Care.
However, the most visible proof of our care of the environment is the condition of green areas in the vicinity of the plant. Its current shape confirms “PUŁAWY”s respect for nature and due consideration for the environment.
On May 10th the final of “A Tree for a Bottle” competition was organized in Puławy Science and Technology Park. It was the 9th edition of the event organized by Azoty Group PUŁAWY. Over 700,000 PET bottles had been collected, which meant that 211 new trees could be planted this year. If all editions of the competition are taken into consideration, over 2 thousand trees have already been planted in Puławy district.
The youth protect the environment
As in the previous year, the competition was targeted at primary school pupils from Puławy district. 1,664 kids from 15 schools participated in “A Tree for a Bottle”, collecting an average of 497.4 bottles per person. Groups and pupils with the best results received prizes and gifts sponsored by the organizers. This year the best result was achieved by Krystian Pyra from Gołąb Primary School. He collected as many as 49,500 bottles. He thus raised the stakes in the competition, beating Arkadiusz Grądziel, who collected 46,453 bottles in 2012.
Together for “A Tree for a Bottle”
This year’s competition, apart from Azoty Group PUŁAWY acting as a representative of Responsible Care Program, was organized by District Office in Puławy and Department of Communal Services in Puławy. PET containers were collected not only by the pupils, but also their families and friends, which made it possible to involve local communities to participate.
“A Tree for a Bottle”® is a campaign initiated by chemical companies participating in “Responsibility and Trust” Program. The objective is to encourage local communities to take part in pro-environmental activities by collecting plastic bottles. “PUŁAWY” has been participating in the initiative.
Less litter, more greenery
The participants are local communities and activities are coordinated by companies situated in each area. The collected pieces of PET packaging are recycled. In return, the inhabitants are given small trees, which are planted, making the local area prettier and serving as a symbol of involvement in pro-environmental activity. Up to now, during nine editions of “A Tree for a Bottle”® campaign, Polish teens have collected nearly 13 million bottles. In this period as many as 18.500 trees were planted! The main target group of the project are pupils, who are easily encouraged to cooperate in activities leading to a better tomorrow.
In 2012, in order to move beyond the local area, “PUŁAWY” as a regional coordinator of the event proposed to modify the formula of the campaign. Schools from the whole Puławy County were invited to participate. The record in individual collection went to Arkadiusz Grądziel, who picked over 46.000 bottles. The Primary School in Gołąb, where Grądziel is a pupil, also left the competition behind. It took the first position with almost 248.000 bottles collected.
In the spring, namely in March and April “A Tree for a Bottle”® 2013 collection shall begin. Last year Pulawy Company gave the participants as many as 400 new trees! How many are there going to be this year?
In recent days, the media shared the information about the contract announced by Pulawy’s Power Plant. The main subject of the contract is the construction of gas-steam power plant with 800-900 MW capacity in Pulawy.