JSE-listed ArcelorMittal South Africa (AMSA) has agreed to pay a R3.64-million fine to the Department of Environmental Affairs, Forestry and Fisheries as a settlement for transgressions of the Atmospheric Emissions Licence at its Vanderbijlpark operations during 2016.
AMSA in June last year reported that it had received a summons notifying it of criminal proceedings related to it having exceeded hydrogen sulphide (H2S) minimum emissions standards at the coke-making plant at the Vanderbijlpark operations for the period January 1, 2016, to December 31, 2016.
The matter was settled on June 10 when AMSA's plea agreement with the prosecution relating to the charge was accepted by the court.
“We have fully cooperated with the investigation and are pleased that the matter has been finalised, avoiding a lengthy and expensive trial which would not be in anyone’s interests.
“While we acknowledge that emissions at our Vanderbijlpark plant exceeded permissible H2S levels for a period of time in the past, steps were taken to address the problem but unfortunately the initiatives implemented did not adequately resolve the problem.
"Significant investment in a sustainable solution has subsequently been made, which was also acknowledged by the authorities,” says AMSA CEO Kobus Verster.
“In striving to be, and to be seen as, a responsible corporate citizen, AMSA continues to be mindful that the business of the company should be conducted in a responsible and ethical manner.
"The company therefore remains committed to focusing on and continuously improving its social, economic, financial and environmental performance,” AMSA adds.