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Tata Steel’s approach for biodiversity conservation

Tata Steel is pursuing a collaborative approach on biodiversity by engaging the employees and local communities through various awareness programmes and workshops. The Company’s future endeavors will be aimed at enhancing strategic partnerships with organisations and agencies to collaborate on biodiversity conservation projects.

Apart from being recognised by the CII-ITC, Tata Steel has also bagged several industry awards for its work in the areas of sustainability and biodiversity. This year, Tata Steel launched its new corporate brand campaign ‘We Also Make Tomorrow’ inspired from its work done in the areas of technology, innovation and sustainability.

Tata Steel has a four tiered approach, which consists of two phases:First phase is the development phase where Tata Steel sets its vision and strategic objectives and the long-term strategies (LTS) to achieve them. The second phase is the deployment phase in which the strategies are converted into action plans through the process of long-term planning (LTP) and annual business planning (ABP).

Tata Steel has consciously invested in biodiversity conservation.The Company has been actively working with the several organisations, to enhance its performance in biodiversity conservation and significantly reducing its impact on ecosystem and biodiversity. Being a business leader in steel making, mining, and manufacturing, the Company is going beyond the regulatory regimes and setting high standards for itself on the social and environmental matters.

Today, sustainability and particularly creating and maintaining excellence in biodiversity is an essential element of how Tata Steel runs its business. Tata Steel launched its Biodiversity Policy in 2016. The policy provides guidelines for including biodiversity in every strategic and operational decision making. The Company is aligning its actions with the National Biodiversity Targets set in 2014 (India level), Aichi Biodiversity Targets set in 2010 (Global level) and Sustainable Development Goals to integrate biodiversity in to its business ecosystem and enable a better tomorrow for future generations.

Engagement with IUCN for biodiversity conservation

This journey has started with Tata Steel’s engagement with International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) since 2013. This engagement is part of IUCN’s Global Business and Biodiversity programme. It seeks to encourage transformational and demonstrable change at the company and sector level on importance of biodiversity conservation relevant to industry and thereby bring about positive gains for conservation at the local and landscape level.

IUCN conducted a baseline survey of Tata Steel’s locations and gave its recommendations on biodiversity management. This included biodiversity assessments, ground truthing studies, secondary research, including stakeholder interactions and understanding the eco-system services provided by the biodiversity. The risks to biodiversity and eco-system services from the Company’s operations and community behaviour were identified and then used to develop its biodiversity conservation and management plan.

IUCN believes that engagement with Tata Steel will not only help the Company reduce its footprint on ecology but would also inspire other companies in going beyond the regulatory regime and bring positive gains for conservation, enhancement and restoration of biodiversity. In the interest of conservation, the Company has committed to avoid acquisition of properties whose development may result in loss of critical habitat for species with special conservation status. The aim of Tata Steel’s Biodiversity Policy is ‘No Net Loss of biodiversity’.

Tata Steel has rolled out Biodiversity Management Plans (BMPs) with IUCN for all its mines in the state of Jharkhand and Odisha. The overall focus of BMP is biodiversity conservation and enhancement in and around the mining sites. BMPs are integrated with the requirements of progressive mine closure plans as well as environment clearance conditions, while including requirements of global standards on biodiversity conservation and mine restoration i.e. World Bank/ International Finance Corporation (IFC) and International Council on Mining and Metals (ICMM).

Best Practices

Following are biodiversity initiatives which are contributing towards the biodiversity conservation:

Regenerated forests at Noamundi

Niche Nesting

Development of Eco-Park at Muck Dump