Water resource management
The administration of water resources at Drummond Ltd. is one of the strategic tasks and one that is managed year after year, firstly because of the need for this resource in the communities and surrounding ecosystems, and secondly because of the demand for it in the various phases of the Company’s production process and in the environmental control measures applied.
To ensure the effectiveness of measures aimed at preserving and preventing contamination of the water resource, Drummond has implemented 182 surface and groundwater quality monitoring stations. All samples collected at these stations are analyzed by laboratories duly accredited by IDEAM.
In order to control the emission of pollutants into watercourses, mining projects implement different treatment systems (grease traps, sedimentation, facultative, oxidation and flocculation pools), where pollutants are eliminated or reduced before being released into natural watercourses.
On the other hand, one of our priorities is the maintenance of water quality in the region. Since the beginning of our operations, specifically in Puerto Drummond, we have established conditions that do not interfere with traditional fishing and we have implemented procedures to protect the safe transit of vessels in the vicinity of the coal loading dock structures.
Likewise, at Puerto Drummond facilities we have a fresh water reservoir, in an area of approximately 6,000 square meters, which is a reusable source of this resource for the work of humidifying the Port’s internal roads and controlling dust in the atmosphere. This space is today a true fauna and flora reserve where diverse populations of animals and plants coexist, many of which are bio-indicators of the quality of the water stored there.
The surroundings of this artificial lake are protected by a vegetation formation with species such as dividivi, campano, siempre viva, uvito, among others, which were planted by Drummond to favor the establishment of fauna communities.
This is how we manage it
In order to monitor the state of the aquifers, we established a monitoring network of piezometric levels (height that water reaches above a reference horizontal) around Drummond's mining projects. Water levels are measured in order to identify possible impacts on the groundwater resource caused by the activity. Our network consists of 48 piezometers located around the perimeter of the company's projects.
Surface water monitoring is carried out to obtain information about the hydrological processes occurring in the watercourses surrounding the mining area. These data are used to estimate the amount of water passing through that section, allowing us to know the behavior of the flow in different climatic periods. This makes it possible to estimate the state and dynamics of the basins, which is useful for planning their management and the design of hydraulic works. Flow measurements are made by means of the limnimetric stations installed in a control section of the watercourses.
Program for Water Efficiency
and Adequate Use of Water
We have treatment systems that allow its recirculation and reuse in industrial processes. In addition, we have optimized the sprinkler systems, renewed the pipes and accessories in the entire water conduction network to prevent losses, and installed consumption meters in the different areas of the operation and water-saving valves in the sanitary batteries. In addition, employees are constantly being informed about the importance of saving water and using it efficiently.
To verify the condition of the beaches in the port operations areas, Drummond, in partnership with the José Benito Vives de Andres Marine and Coastal Research Institute (Invemar), conducts an annual specialized study of the composition of the sands that make up this resource. At the same time, the quality of the seawater is monitored periodically to guarantee its good physicochemical and biological condition. Rigorous environmental and safety controls are carried out during coal loading operations at sea to avoid any possible source of contamination.