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Acid Plant Database   January 15, 2021


The Pechenganickel Mining & Metallurgical Combine (joint stock company).

Kola Mining-Metallurgical Company (KMMC)

Nikel-Logo.gif (4529 bytes)



Background Part of Norilsk Nickel
Website www.nornik.ru
Plant Pechenganickel
Coordinates* 69° 24' 43" N, 30° 14' 11" E
Type of Plant Metallurgical
Gas Source Nickel
Plant Capacity -
Status -
Year Built 1970
Technology -
Contractor -
Remarks 2001 – Boliden Contach AB contracted to for gas cleaning plant installation
Pictures     KMMC-Penchenganickel-2.jpg (98146 bytes)   KMMC-Penchenganickel-3.jpg (103458 bytes)   KMMC-Penchenganickel-5.jpg (61865 bytes)   KMMC-Penchenganickel-6.jpg (93651 bytes)   KMMC-Penchenganickel-7.jpg (48807 bytes)
General The combine is situated in the north-west part of the Kola Peninsula near the Norwegian border. It is divided into two sites, one at Zapolyarny and one at the settlement of Nickel. In 1946, following the retaking of the Pechenga area by the Soviet army, open-cast mines and smelting shops built in 1940 by Inco of Canada were brought into operation for matte production.

The combine comprises four open pits, an enrichment plant, a roasting shop, smelting and sulphuric acid production shops. There are also motor and rail transport repair workshops and other auxiliary facilities essential for maintaining production.

The combine processes its own nickel- and copper- sulphide ore with 0.6-1.7% contained nickel and 0.3-0.77% contained copper, and rich ore from the main Norilsk combine. About 10,000 people work at Pechenganickel. Its principal products are matte, which is processed on tolling basis at the Severonickel combine, and sulphuric acid. Implementation of the RF Government's Decree No. 667, On State Support for the Reconstruction of Metallurgical Production at the Pechenganickel Combine, will enable the Norilsk combine to make essential improvements to the ecological situation on the Kola peninsula.

Norilsk Nickel is a diversified mining and metallurgical company, the world's largest producer of palladium and high-grade nickel and a major producer of platinum and copper. The company also produces cobalt, rhodium, silver, gold, iridium, ruthenium, selenium, tellurium, sulphur and other products.The production units of Norilsk Nickel Group are located at the Norilsk Industrial District, on the Kola Peninsula and Zabaykalsky Krai in Russia as well as in Finland and South Africa.MMC Norilsk Nickel shares are listed on the Moscow and on the Saint-Petersburg Stock Exchanges, ADRs are traded over the counter in the US and on the London, Berlin and Frankfurt Stock Exchanges.           

References -
News December 23, 2020 - MMC Norilsk Nickel, the world's largest producer of palladium and high-grade nickel and a major producer of platinum and copper, is shutting down a smelting shop in the town of Nikel in Russia's Murmansk region. It is the company's oldest production facility to date. Its shutdown is part of Nornickel's comprehensive environmental programme, which aims to significantly reduce the environmental impact at all production sites. With the closure of the shop, hazardous emissions into the atmosphere at the Russia's Norwegian border will cease.  Nornickel's President Vladimir Potanin commented: "Today will be a symbolic event - the melting of the "last ladle", after which the smelting shop will be closed.  This is a historic event for Nornickel. Following the closure of the smelting facilities in Nikel, we are modernising our metallurgical production in Monchegorsk, including the construction of new state-of-the-art facilities. It is important for us to ensure that our own production meets modern requirements. Nornickel produces commodities that are in demand and beneficial for the economy of the future - our metals are used in batteries and car catalysts. This allows us to say that on the map of our country, on the map of the world, there is an environmentally advanced company which also produces goods for the green economy.  "Murmansk Region Governor Andrey Chibis said: "The company's decision to close the smelter was certainly a forced measure aimed at reducing harmful emissions into the atmosphere. But overall, it is a reconfiguration of the Kola Mining and Metallurgical Company's production facilities, modernisation, implementation of modern technologies and an increase in the output of the company's main products in our region. The most important task initially was to take into account what employees here wanted. To take all possible measures for social adaptation of the shop's employees. The workers who wished to remain with the company were offered jobs in other units. For those who decided to try their hand at entrepreneurship, good starting conditions were created".The decision to close the smelting facility was made by Nornickel in November 2019. The closure will completely eliminate sulphur dioxide emissions in the cross-border area with Norway. Due to the implementation of the programme, it is planned to reduce sulphur dioxide emissions at Kola MMC by 50% in 2020 and by 85% by 2021.After the shutdown, the customer service and the clean-up service will continue to operate in the shop. Within a year after the shutdown, the shop's building will be prepared for mothballing: it will be cleaned, materials containing non-ferrous metals will be collected and sent for recycling.The industrial site may be preserved if an option for its use can be found. Nornickel supported a competition among investors willing to implement an industrial or cultural business project at the vacated smelter site. Its prerequisite was the ecological transformation of the industrial zone, the creation of green production facilities and new jobs. The winning project was the establishment of a metallurgical mini-mill for the production of grinding balls and long products (LLC Sirius). Nornickel plans to support the winner's project in the form of advisory assistance, commitments to repurchase part of the products, provide preferential terms and reduced tariffs for material and technical resources, etc.With the closure of the smelter, the production chain will be adjusted: concentrate from the Zapolyarny concentrator will be delivered to concentrate shipment hubs, from where it will be supplied to consumers. The technical re-equipment of the plant and the parallel construction of the concentrate loading facilities are important components of the Nornickel's environmental project.  A crucial aspect in the decision to close the smelter was support for the shop's staff. The company used its successful case of shutting down the obsolete Nickel Plant in Norilsk in 2016 as a model. Nornickel provided social guarantees for the shop's personnel: convenient transfer to other company's operations, retraining and pension programmes. Of the 660 employees at the smelting shop, 72% chose to continue working in the company's divisions. Most of them are already employed, and the procedure for employment of the rest will be completed shortly. The company will spend over 900 million roubles for a set of measures and social programmes for the smelting shop employees in 2020-2022.  Another important issue is the comprehensive development of the area after the shutdown. In cooperation with regional and municipal authorities, the company has set up a Development Strategy for the Pechenga District, which contains fundamentally different approaches to the development of the territory. In order to implement the strategy, the company has taken on the responsibility to attract new businesses and social entrepreneurs to the district. In 2020, a contest was held among entrepreneurs, based on the results of which 11 entrepreneurs will receive interest-free loans from Nornickel to develop business projects with a total borrowing amount of 185 million roubles. New enterprises are expected to be opened as early as 2021, which will open 145 new jobs in the area.

HISTORICAL NOTE The smelting shop in the town of Nikel is the oldest metallurgical facility of Kola MMC. Before the Great Patriotic War, the area on which it was located belonged to Finland. The construction of the smelting shop was organised by a Finnish-Canadian consortium, Petsamo Nikkeli, in 1938. The construction was completed in 1942 by Finland and Germany. In 1944 the factory was blown up when the German army retreated. After Nikel was passed to the Soviet Union, the reconstruction of the smelter started. On November 19 1946, the first five tonnes of Soviet high-grade matte were produced.Over 74 years the shop smelted 61.8 million tonnes of nickel-containing feedstock and produced over 2.4 million tonnes of nickel in high-grade matte.Throughout its history, the smelting shop was modernised and expanded several times. In the 1960s, powerful ore-thermal electric furnaces, converters and a pilot plant for the production of roasted pellets were put into operation in the smelting shop. In the 1970s, the converter slag depletion furnace was commissioned and a sulphuric acid plant was built.  In 1991, the smelting shop in Nikel became one of the largest in the industry. It was processing 1.33 million tonnes of ore material and churning out 100,000 tonnes of high-grade matte per year.In 1998, the smelting shop became part of the newly formed Kola MMC.  As part of the smelting shop's emission reduction plan, a number of measures were taken: automatic charging was introduced in the ore-thermal furnaces, and frequency converters to control exhaust blowers were installed at the converter. In 2013, the shop saw the construction of a new casting, a special platform for installing molds into which high-grade matte is poured. In 2016, the shop's ore-thermal furnace No. 5 underwent overhaul.

November 21, 2016
- The notoriously polluting Kola Mining and Metallurgy Combine (KMMC) has said it plans to reduce annual emissions of sulfur dioxide by nearly half within two years, it’s parent company told Bellona.  A source of tension between Norway and Russia since the fall of the Soviet Union, the KMMC – a daughter company of the giant Norilsk Nickel based in Northern Siberia – yearly emits some 80,000 tons of the heavy metal, much of which finds its way into northern Norway.  Norilsk Nickel itself announced last week that it would slash emissions in its hometown – the most polluted city in Russia – by as much as 75 percent by 2020.  Yury Yushin, who heads the Norilsk Nickel’s department of cooperative programs told Bellona that the company intends to reduce its emissions to 44,000 tons a year by 2019. He didn’t, however, discuss any specifics behind the dramatic reduction.  But the fact that a major polluter in both Northwest Russia and Northern Siberia is announcing such major pollution slashes – while it’s not clear how they will achieve them – has encouraged Bellona.  The bulk of emissions from the KMMC originate from its facilities in the Kola Peninsula industrial cities of Zapolyarny and Nikel. Higher than safe emissions of sulfur dioxide into the atmosphere around and adjoining the Kola Peninsula have for 25 years been a sore spot between Norway and Russia.  Yushin told Bellona the KMMC has managed to solve problem high emissions from Zapolyarny without raising them in Nikel.  Alexander Tyukin, the KMMC’s head of science and technical development and environmental safety, told Bellona that funding to reduce polluting emissions would be come from a variety of investment programs.  The most cited source of pollution at the KMMC, said Tyukin, is its briquetting workshop in Zapolyarny. “The construction and launch of this installation allowed us to reduce emissions of sulfur dioxide by 35,000 tons a year,” Tyukin said. “This is a serious and very significant environmental effect.”  He underscored that solving emissions problems in Zapolyarny allowed the company to forgo raising emissions in Nikel  According to company represenatives, sulfur dioxide emissions from Nikel 2015 amounted to 79,980 tons in 2015; emissions from Zapolyarny came to 40,000 tons, and emissions from its third facility in Monchegorsk amounted to 37,000 tons.  These amounts, however, represent an increase over 2014 sulfur dioxide emission figures.  Yushin told Bellona that closing the closure of a nickel factory in Norilsk in Northern Siberia liquidated a source of some 370,000 tons of sulfur dioxide.  “The factory was built in 1942. It even looked monstrous,” Yushin told Bellona. “Production was closed because working that way was no longer feasible.”  Yet, the smelting workshop in Nikel looks just as monstrous and was built even earlier, in 1940.

Nickel Refining to move to Monchegorsk

In conjunction with the factory closure in Norilsk, nickel production will move along different lines. Its refining will move to Monchegorsk not far from the Norwegian border.  It will be processed at the Nadezhda Metallurgy Factory in Norilsk.  “Emissions in Monchegorsk will not go up because final nickel production will be facilitated with different technology,” said Yushin.  A facility will also be built to cleanse salt runoff from nickel production before it’s dumped in water sources. Yushin said salt would be boiled out of water and returned to further nickel production. The cost of that project, he said, would be 1.5 billion rubles ($23.4 million).  Yelena Bezdenezhnikh, Norilsk Nickel’s vice president, said in a release (in Russian) that the company was planning to invest 27.7 rubles ($432.6 million) in the KMMC between 2017 and 2018.  She said the funding would be “directed to realizing strategic projects for company development, boosting its economic and environmental effectiveness, and renewing technology and equipment.”  The developments have encouraged environmentalists, though they hope the announcements don’t just remain on paper.  “This is good news for the environment in the region because today’s emissions from the KMMC are unacceptable,” said Oskar Njaa, an advisor in Bellona’s Russian group. “Bellona supports the KMMC’s intention to lessen its negative effect on the environment and is ready to offer help and cooperation to make the Arctic cleaner.”

August 25, 2016 - Ruslan Tischenko, a former official from Murmansk’s division of Russia’s federal environmental watchdog, pleaded guilty in court today of accepting bribes from one of the Kola Peninsula’s most polluting industries, the Kola Mining and Metallurgy Company.  The KMMC has long been at flashpoint of controversy for polluting not just the Kola Peninsula with toxic sulfur dioxide, but neighboring northern Norway, Sweden and Finland as well.  Much of Norway’s inability to negotiate with Russia over this problem stems from the insistence of Russia’s environmental watchdog, Rosprirodnadzor’s failure to adequately and scientifically establish the problem.  Because the official was said by prosecutors to be a cooperative witness, what comes next in the trial could bring down a cascade of corruption indictments against KMMC management and federal environmental officials.  The KMMC is a daughter company of Norilsk Nickel, a Russian industrial giant that provides a third of the world’s nickel supply.  Recently, mid-level politicians in Norway have appealed to Oslo to enforce travel bans to Europe for Norilsk Nickel’s majority shareholder, oligarch Vladimir Potantin, until he brings the Kola plants into accord with contemporary environmental standards.  At today’s hearing, both Tischenko and his lawyer objected to press being present in the gallery, but the judge allowed journalists for the hearing’s public portion.  Tishenko also pleaded guilty to another unrelated charge of taking bribes from another Murmansk area concern called the City Center for Expert Evaluation, an environmental auditing firm.  In this instance, Tishenko was arrested in December 2014 while in the act of receiving a bribe totaling 1,229,000 rubles ($19,000) from an unnamed official with the City Center for Expert Evaluation.  In return, he assured the company quick acceptance by Rosprirodnadzor of its documents on reissuing a license to a third company, Apatit, a Murmansk area mining and processing company, to store various classes of dangerous waste.  Relative to the KMMC, Tischenko said he was guilty of accepting more than 6 million rubles ($92,000) from another unknown person within the management of the company to assure its relicensing for decontamination and storage of various classes of toxic waste and for confirming the company was spewing pollution within limits regulated by the Russian government.  At today’s hearing, prosecutors charged that Tischenko had brought to light “violations of current legislation” that ran afoul of established norms and limits for pollution established for the KMMC.  The charges further read that he willfully devised to flout these norms by receiving bribes, and in return relicense the facility despite its polluting record.  After the reading of the charges, Tischenko rose and told the court that, “I confess my guilt in both episodes fully.”  For its part, the KMMC, which could also be facing legal proceedings in a separate hearing, maintained through its press office that it considers the currents case to be a “misunderstanding,”  “The company will not comment on the investigation or the court proceedings. We are certain that this is a misunderstanding, and the company has no ties to the proceedings,” the KMMC’s press service told Bellona today.  To this point, and to the fury of many local and Norwegian environmentalists, the KMMC has paid a total of 25,000 rubles ($382) for exceeding the norms of sulfur dioxide concentrations it is allowed by current pollution mandates.  According to the prosecutor, a plea-bargain has been reached with Tischenko, and he has cooperated with the investigation, including giving detailed information during interrogation, and has supplied information on those he colluded with.  “Information from the investigation has facilitated the bringing of criminal charges regarding other persons of interest in corrupt activities,” said the prosecutor at today’s hearing. “[Tischenko] has also given up the funding her received in bribes.”  At this, the public session the press was allowed to attend ended. The judge assessed the remaining portion of the hearing, because of its relation to the specifics of the investigation, closed.

August 31, 2015
- Norilsk-Nickel on Monday announces a net profit of $1.5 billion for first half of 2015.  Adjusted for non-cash items, the net profit reached $1.9 billion.  The company is the largest private mining and metallurgical enterprise on Russia’s Kola Peninsula. Kola Mining and Mettalurgical Company (KMMC) runs the smelters in Nikel and Monchegorsk, along with mines in Zapolyarny.  The company employees several tens of thousands of people and is the biggest taxpayer in the Murmansk region.Together with Norilsk in Siberia, the industrial cities on the Kola Peninsula are world-famous for being surrounded by ecological disaster zones due to heavy metal and sulphur dioxide pollutions from the factories.  Cross-border smoke in the Norwegian, Russian borderland continues to be a torn in the relations between the two nations.  Russia’s environmental watchdog, the Rosprirornadzor, has fined Kola Mining Metallurgical Company with monthly penalties for violating the maximum allowed concentrations of pollutants in the air. Like in April, when the pollution level one day was 12.6 times the maximum allowed SO2 concentration, as previously reported by BarentsObserver.The administrative penalty was set to 25.000 rubles, equal to $463.  With a net profit of $8.24 million every day over the first six months this year, that monthly penalty was paid in less than 5 seconds. Anna Kireeva with the ecological NGO Bellona Murmansk says to BarentsObserver that the penalties are comic.“The laughable fines levied againt one of the world’s richest companies for gassing the populations of its host cities speaks for itself,” Anna Kireeva says. “One might draw the conclusion that environmental NGOs pose a bigger risk than heavy metal billowing industries: The minimum fine face by an NGO receiving foreign funding that fails to register itself with Russia’s Justice Ministry as a “foreign agent” is 300,000 to 500,000 rubles, or €4,550 to €7,550,” Anna Kireeva argues. 

August 25, 2014 - Sulphur dioxide pollution significantly up from Kola GMK’s smelters in Nikel and Monchegorsk.  Norwegians measure more heavy metals in freshwater fish near the border.  The figures from Kola GMK, a fully owned subsidiary of Norilsk Nickel, show the increase in sulphur dioxide (SO2) pollution from the plants on Russia’s Murmansk region. In 2013, the emission into the atmosphere from the plant in the town of Nikel was 74,978 tons ofSO2, up from 63,592 in 2012.  It is the regional environmental group Bellona Murmansk that refer to the statistics from Kola GMK at the organization’s portal.  From the plants in Monchegorsk further south on the Kola Peninsula, the pollution increased from 33,325 tons in 2012 to 36,617 tons in 2013.  In addition, Kola GMK has a pellets plant for nickel-ore in Zapolyarny, a few kilometers east of Nikel. According to Rosstat in Murmansk, the total SO2 emission from Kola GMK’s plants in Nikel and Zapolyarny was 104,000 tons in 2012, making the emissions from Zapolyarny some 40,000 tons.  Bellona advisor Larisa Bronder says there is a mismatch between what the company says and what they do. “KolaGMK is constantly talking about the measures taken to reduce emissions of sulphur dioxide. However, the official figures show that emissions are increasing each year,” says Larisa Bronder.  Environmental officials on the Norwegian side of the border in the north are worried.  The County Governor of Finnmark’s environmental office is this summer measuring increased levels of heavy metals in freshwater fish catched near the border to Russia. The smelter in Nikel is located only a few kilometers from the border to Norway.  There is more nickel, cobber and mercury in the nature and especially in lakes and sediments in lakes, the officials say to NRK Nordnytt.  Helen Andersen is senior engineer at the County Governor’s office. She says there could be two reasons for the increase. “The reasons for the increase could be changes in the production at the smelters on the Russia side of the border. But, for instance long transported pollutants from China could cause the increase in mercury.“ www.barentsobserver.com

June 25, 2009
- Kola MMC’s plants near the Norwegian border emitted 97.7 thousand tons of sulphur dioxide in 2008.  That is five times more than the entire Norwegian emissions of sulphur dioxide.  Norilsk-Nickel recently published some of their environmental data for 2008 at the company’s own website. The local branch, Kola Mining and Metallurgical Company (Kola MMC), is still emitting huge amounts of sulphur dioxide in the border areas between Norway and Russia.  At the roasting plant in Zapolyarny and the smelter in Nikel the total emission of sulphur dioxide (SO2) was near 100 thousand tons in 2008.  Both plants are located some few kilometres from the Norwegian border.  Norway’s estimated total emission of sulphur dioxide was 20 thousand tons according to the 2008 statistics from Norwegian Pollution Control Authorities.  The highest concentrations of sulphur dioxide pollution in Norway are found along the border to Russia.  From the plants in Monchegorsk, also on the Kola Peninsula, the total emission of sulphur dioxide was 34.3 thousand tons in 2008, according to the company's own figures.   Kola MMC writes at their website about their forest rehabilitation programs in the areas adjacent to its production sites. Since 2003, 18.5 hectares of land in the Pechenga district, where the smelter in Nikel and roaster in Zaployarny are located, were recultivated. 81.5 hectares near Monchegorsk 81,5 hectares were recultivated. Total costs of this work reached 65.4 million rubles.  In 2007, Kola MMC produced 7.6 million tons of ore, 116 thousand tons of nickel and 66 thousand tons of copper. Kola Peninsula’s refining capacities at Monchegorsk process both Kola Peninsula high-grade matte and matte received from the Polar Division located in Norilsk on the Taimyr Peninsula, northern Siberia.  

MTPD - Metric Tonne per Day           STPD - Short Ton per Day
MTPA - Metric Tonne per Annum      STPA - Short Ton per Annum
SA - Single Absorption
DA - Double Absorption

* Coordinates can be used to locate plant on Google Earth