♦ Environment


We rely on resources such as natural gas and water, and we have the potential to impact the environment through emissions of greenhouse gases, waste generation and contamination of soil and groundwater. We are committed to our Value of ‘Care for the Community & our Environment’ and we aim to minimise environmental impacts and leave no legacies.

In line with our Value of “Care for the Community and our Environment”, we apply a continuous improvement approach to management of environmental matters, focusing on the efficient use of non-renewable resources, environmental management at our sites and the rehabilitation and remediation of contaminated sites.

Our Health, Safety, Environment and Community Policy states that we will conduct our operations in compliance with all relevant environmental licences and regulations, promote the efficient use of resources and energy and strive to minimise our impact on the environment. This Policy is enacted on a day-to-day basis through our HSEC Management System. Our induction process includes discussion and sign off on our HSEC Policy for all employees.

IPL completes the CDP and CDP Water reports annually. These are available on our website and can be downloaded here: 2017 CDP Report and 2017 CDP Water Report. Our 2018 CDP Report, which corresponds to the period covered in this online report, will be completed in June 2018.

We have conducted high level Life Cycle Assessments of the energy and carbon emissions associated with our two major manufacturing processes, being the production of ammonia and ammonium nitrate. The first LCA is based on our Phosphate Hill site, which makes ammonia based fertilisers. The second is based on our Moranbah ammonium nitrate manufacturing site. Each is representative of the scope and activity of our manufacturing operations across the Group.

We have a governance structure in place that oversees the management of our environmental impacts:

• The Board’s Health, Safety, Environment and Community (HSEC) Committee assists the Board in its oversight of health, safety, environment and community matters arising from our activities as they may affect employees, contractors, and the local communities in which we operate.

 • The Zero Harm Council, chaired by our Managing Director & CEO and consisting of members of the Executive Team, is accountable for reviewing health, safety and environmental performance. 

 • The Zero Harm Council is supported by Zero Harm Councils within each business unit, down to site level. These Councils are chaired by the business unit head to provide leadership on health, safety and environment. Business Unit Councils meet monthly and report to the Executive Team. Within each of our business units, operations staff and project teams are responsible for preparing and executing plans to support environmental targets and strategies.

 • Site managers are responsible for the operation of their site, including their environmental performance. Environmental managers within the business provide site managers with expertise to support the day-to-day environmental management of sites.

IPL has a strong focus on both abatement technologies and progressively increasing resource efficiencies to reduce its impacts on the environment, including GHG emissions which contribute to climate change.

Our consumption of resources, such as fossil fuels (mostly natural gas), electricity and water and the amount of GHG emissions we produce is representative of the scale and capacity of our manufacturing plants, in particular the energy-intensive manufacture of ammonia-derived products, including urea, ammonium sulphate, ammonium phosphate and ammonium nitrate for the fertiliser and explosives markets. All of these products require natural gas as both an energy source and a raw material for production, with carbon dioxide being liberated during the process. In addition, carbon dioxide is liberated during the acidulation of phosphate rock in the manufacture of phosphate fertilisers and nitrogen oxides (NOx) and nitrous oxide (N2O, a potent GHG) are released during the production of nitric acid.

In Australia a central reporting system collects energy use, water use and waste data from all manned sites. The data is obtained from utility bills, except where electricity is generated on site. Electricity generated from natural gas at remote sites is metered on site and this is also entered into the database. Municipal water use is obtained from water bills, whereas volumes for storm water, river water, recycled process water or ground water are typically metered on site. The data is then consolidated and verified for reporting purposes. Energy use, water use and waste data for our sites in North America and Europe are supplied separately.

Our sites are driving environmental improvements and resource efficiencies using BEx continuous improvement processes.

• Environmental metrics are included on BEx visual management boards, which are reviewed at site daily management meetings

• Continued environmental training across our manufacturing and distribution sites, focusing on: environmental requirements and compliance; stormwater and universal waste management; protecting endangered species; spill prevention and response procedures; and environmental release reporting.

• Environmental team members undertake ‘Gemba’ walks at our manufacturing and distribution sites. ‘Gemba’ is a Japanese word which means “at the site”. When Gemba is used in conjunction with process improvement methodologies, it refers to the act of making observations of the process in action, then working with employees to recognise and address potential environmental hazards in their work areas

• Environmental goals associated with progressing along the BEx maturity scale are being incorporated in to the short term incentive plans of our US manufacturing environmental team members

• Addressing resource efficiencies and 'loss and waste' using BEx processes. 

• Increasing environmental incident reporting across the Australian businesses to include ‘near miss’ or ‘potential impact’ incidents in order to proactively manage potential incidents before they occur.

• Continuous improvement of raw material and bulk product handling processes to reduce loss, waste and spills.


Key Challenges and Opportunities


• Continuing to identify and prioritise resource inefficiencies and reduce energy, water and waste;

• Securing capital to drive resource efficiencies in difficult market conditions;

• Responding to changing carbon regulatory conditions globally, particularly in Australia;

• Continuing to improve our environmental compliance and management systems, and our environmental performance; and

• Responding to climate change risks and opportunities.



Strategic Priorities


• Conducting water balance projects at three major manufacturing sites;

• Extending iAuditor to Australian manufacturing sites to conduct daily environmental photo logs;

• Continued focus on improving environmental awareness through training, with an emphasis on loss of containment, spill prevention and stormwater pollution prevention; and

• Continuing to work with the Australian Federal Government on energy and carbon policy to ensure favourable outcomes for business and the environment.