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Vale recognized for environmental efforts

Company receives Environmental Excellence Award from the Mining Association of Canada

Vale’s Sudbury Biodiversity Program has been recognized for its work by the Mining Association of Canada (MAC).

The miner received an Environmental Excellence Award under the Towards Sustainable Mining (TSM) program during the annual convention of the Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum (CIM) on May 7.

“We are proud to be acknowledged for Vale’s biodiversity program in Sudbury,” said Lisa Lanteigne, environment manager for Vale’s Ontario Operations, in a May 8 news release.

“The program has been successful because of a sustained commitment to community collaboration and an innovative approach to environmental stewardship. The program exemplifies one of our core company values – Prize Our Planet.”

Vale’s biodiversity work in Sudbury focuses on regreening and reclamation efforts, transforming historically stressed lands and waterways back to their natural states after more than a century of mining activities. To improve biodiversity within the community, Vale undertakes a number of activities, including:

  • growing more than 300,000 trees annually in its greenhouse for planting throughout the City of Greater Sudbury;
  • investing $250,000 and donating 50,000 tree seedlings annually to the City of Greater Sudbury’s Biodiversity Action Plan;
  • promoting pollination by raising bees on its Smelter property along Highway 55 in Sudbury and planting milkweed for monarch butterflies, which are great pollinators;
  • seeding hundreds of acres each year by air through an aerial seeding program that has reclaimed approximately 8,000 acres since 1990; and
  • raising and releasing more than 100,000 fish to date into local waterways through a comprehensive fish-stocking program.

“We congratulate Vale for their outstanding projects,” said Pierre Gratton, president and CEO of MAC, in the release.

“They showcase what best practice looks like in our sector, whether it be spurring local economic development and entrepreneurship in communities where they operate or adopting innovative methods to restore mining areas back to nature.”

Vale’s Voisey’s Bay operation in Newfoundland and Labrador won a TSM Excellence Award for Community Engagement in 2017 for its innovative Winter Shipping Program that involved extensive collaboration with Inuit and Innu communities.

Vale’s Manitoba Operations in Thompson was a finalist for this year’s TSM Environmental Excellence Award for its effective SLAM Dunk program, which aims to divert 100 per cent of waste from landfills by adhering to the 3Rs: reduce, reuse and recycle. Vale’s Manitoba Operations also received the TSM Community Engagement award in 2015 for its Thompson Economic Diversification Working Group project.

Vale’s Ontario Operations was also acknowledged as a finalist for the TSM Community Engagement Excellence Award this year for funding and supporting the City of Greater Sudbury’s new emergency mass notification service, ‘Sudbury Alerts’.