2021 sustainability report

Occupational
health and safety

Human capital

Employee health and safety is one of Nornickel’s strategic priorities. The Company has the Occupational Health and Safety Policy in place, which gives precedence to the life and health of employees over operational performance while also demonstrating the Company’s commitment to creating a safe and healthy environment and fostering sustainable employee motivation for safe workplace behaviour.

Key goals in occupational health and safety:

  • No work-related fatalities — zero tolerance to any work-related fatalities
  • Injury rate reduction — bringing down the number of lost time injuries
  • Safe working conditions and mitigation of mining and processing risks..

Health and safety management

Occupational health and safety (OHS) at Nornickel is governed by Russian laws, international regulations and standards, and internal policies and regulations.

GRI 403-1

OHS regulations:

  • Applicable Russian laws aligned with international laws, including conventions of the International Labour Organisation
  • Occupational Health and Safety Policy
  • Occupational Health and Safety Strategy
  • Corporate OHS standards (19 in total)
  • Regulation on the Health and Safety Management System
  • OHS sections in collective bargaining agreements for the Group’s Russian operations
  • Regulations and guidelines for all production processes
  • Project implementation plans and specifications for repair, construction and installation works
  • Health and safety guidelines for specific jobs and types of work at all of the Company’s facilities

Occupational health and safety responsibilities are allocated among Nornickel’s various governance bodies and business units in line with their terms of reference.

The Group has in place the Corporate Standard on Management Commitment to Occupational Health and Safety.

In line with it, managers draw up personal commitments for the year, which include personal meetings with employees at production units, participation in audits of the health and safety management system, and holding of the Engineer’s Day with line managers. As part of these initiatives, managers take part in a variety of activities ranging from attending pre-shift stand-up meetings and joint visits to workplaces, to one-onone conversations and recommendations to line managers. Achievement of the personal targets is reflected in the management’s KPIs.

Heads of operational units chair regular sessions with employees of the Group’s divisions and subsidiaries to foster occupational safety culture.

GRI 102-26

Governance body
Responsibility

Governance body

Board of Directors

Responsibility

  • determining the Company’s priorities and approving the OHS plans;
  • monitoring the Company’s OHS performance.

Governance body

Vice President, Ecology and Industrial Safety

Responsibility

  • organising and coordinating OHS activities;
  • reporting to the Board of Directors.

Governance body

HSE Committee

Responsibility

  • improving the efficiency of OHS organisation and prevention initiatives;
  • strengthening managers’ and experts’ responsibility for creating a healthy and safe working environment;
  • assessing the efficiency of OHS initiatives;
  • improving the OHS management system.

Governance body

HSE Department

Responsibility

  • developing OHS initiatives and monitoring compliance with the applicable legislation.

Occupational health and safety certification

MMC Norilsk Nickel (Head Office, Polar Division, Polar Transport Division, Murmansk Transport Division)
ISO 45001:2018
Kola MMC
ISO 45001:2018
Pechengastroy
ISO 45001:2018
Norilsknickelremont
GOST 12.0.230-2007 (interstate standard identical to ILO-OSH 2001)
Norilsk Nickel Harjavalta
ISO 45001:2018

In 2021, Nornickel’s facilities passed surveillance audits to confirm compliance of occupational health and safety management systems at the key assets with ISO 45001:2018 Occupational Health and Safety Management System. Following the audits, Bureau Veritas Certification, the certification body, described the OHS management system as mature and well-established and deemed it to be compliant with the standard.

Contractor safety management

GRI 403-1 GRI 403-2 GRI 403-7

Nornickel has developed and introduced a dedicated standard to improve control and safety of work performed by contractors at its facilities. The standard sets out relevant requirements applicable to contractors at the selection stage and onwards.

On the domestic market, Nornickel procures production and technical supplies under master agreements. As part of centralised procurement, a standalone agreement is signed with each contractor stating that the contractor recognises and commits to generally accepted principles in human rights (which include health and safety) and labour relations, as stipulated by international regulations and in particular the UN Global Compact.

All works carried out by contractors in highly hazardous conditions are governed by the respective corporate standard. Work permits, operations certificates and work execution plans (process sheets, guidelines, etc.) must contain safety requirements to be met when organising and performing work. The Company checks compliance with these requirements during each shift.

GRI 403-5

Prior to commencement of work, contractors’ staff receive pre-job and ad hoc health and safety briefing, including security measures set forth in work execution plans.

On the sites of its facilities, the Group holds regular joint inspections of compliance with safety requirements at work, and OHS council (committee) meetings involving contractor representatives. In case of failure to comply with OHS requirements, contractors are fined.

Workplace injuries

SASB EM-MM-320a.1

In 2021, the Group had 42 lost time injuries, with LTIFR standing at 0.38; while this is an increase from the 0.20 level seen in 2020, we are still below the average for the global mining industry and considerably below our corporate metrics for 2013–2015.

In 2021, the Group recorded eleven fatal accidents, compared to nine in 2020. The largest number of fatalities was seen in Norilsk Division and was related to underground work. As a response measure, an expert group comprising Polar Division’s managers from different areas was established with a view to increasing the stability and safety of mining processes. Their contribution helped develop an action plan to improve industrial safety.

There was a tragic accident related to a walkway collapse at Norilsk Concentrator involving eight employees of Norilsknickelremont, three of whom died.

Nornickel offers its condolences to the families and friends of the deceased and is taking all possible measures to prevent similar incidents going forward.

All circumstances of the fatal accidents were reported on to the Board of Directors and thoroughly investigated to avoid them in the future. Nornickel’s management views occupational safety and zero workplace fatalities as its key strategic objectives and keeps running dedicated programmes to prevent workplace accidents.

Key workplace injury indicators*

GRI 403-9 GRI 403-10

Indicator
UoM
2017
2018
2019
2020
2021
Change in 2021 y-o-y, %

Indicator

FIFR

UoM

2017

0.08

2018

0.05

2019

0.08

2020

0.08

2021

0.10

Change in 2021 y-o-y, %

Indicator

LTIFR

UoM

2017

0.44

2018

0.23

2019

0.32

2020

0.20

2021

0.38

Change in 2021 y-o-y, %

+90

Indicator

Total workplace injuries as per Russian labour laws

UoM

No.

2017

61

2018

32

2019

44

2020

31

2021

53

Change in 2021 y-o-y, %

+71

Indicator

Fatal workplace injuries

UoM

No.

2017

9

2018

6

2019

9

2020

9

2021

11

Change in 2021 y-o-y, %

+22.2

Indicator

Minor injuries

UoM

No.

2017

719

2018

1,043

2019

1,000

2020

788

2021

314

Change in 2021 y-o-y, %

-60.2

Indicator

Potentially dangerous incidents

UoM

No.

2017

1,711

2018

2,270

2019

2,220

2020

1,751

2021

789

Change in 2021 y-o-y, %

-57.4

Indicator

Occupational diseases

UoM

No.

2017

361

2018

318

2019

290

2020

235

2021

213

Change in 2021 y-o-y, %

-9.4

Fatalities by accident type in 2021
Fatalities by work type in 2021

Fatalities by accident type in 2021

Fatalities by accident type in 2021

Fatalities by work type in 2021

Fatalities by work type in 2021

Reducing fatalities is the main priority for 2022–2025

Key measures to decrease workplace injury rates:

Mining

  • assemble a group of experts to evaluate and improve safety standards in mining;
  • enhance the safety culture, more actively engage the management and workforce in industrial safety initiatives;
  • further promote the risk-oriented approach to work;
  • fine-tune the system for preventing mine vehicle accidents;
  • use modern training methods, including an underground base and simulators for operators of load-haul-dump machines / roof bolters and drillers;
  • further develop control systems and digitalisation projects.

Maintenance and repair

  • roll out the smart video analytics and positioning system;
  • build state-of-the-art training sites allowing for learning practical skills of working at height safely;
  • renovate staircases, platforms and shop racks.

Accidents and work-related injuries since 2013

Accidents and work-related injuries since 2013 Accidents and work-related injuries since 2013

OHS system development and mitigation of key risks

GRI 403-1 GRI 403-2

To achieve our strategic goal to reduce the occupational injury rate, the Company seeks to continuously improve the elements of its occupational health and safety framework. The changes cover all Operating Unit businesses and all production stages — from mining ore to making metals.

In 2021, Nornickel continued to implement the Control, Management and Security Automated System (CMS AS) as part of the Occupational Health and Safety Process Management System Implementation Programme.

CMS AS is an information system based on the SAP EHSM software that collects, processes, registers and analyses occupational health and safety information. As a single centralised managerial tool, CMS AS delivers improvements in the quality and efficiency of health and safety processes and ensures a unified approach to procedures and reporting in this area.

In May 2021, CMS AS was put into commercial operation (with limited functionality) at 17 Group companies.

To improve planning efficiency, automated operational control, and industrial safety, Nornickel is implementing the Technological Breakthrough programme. As part of the programme, mines now run a dispatching and local positioning system at mines to transmit online data on the underground location of around 6,500 employees.

Nornickel has developed and implemented a standard for the identification and management of occupational health and safety risks. The risk management framework has undergone multiple audits. In 2021, the Company worked consistently to comply with the standard requirements and further improve its hazard identification procedures and assess and manage occupational health and safety risks. In the reporting year, Nornickel verified risk registers, compiled and revised risk lists and implemented risk mitigation action plans. Also, the standard provides for a procedure where employees can refuse to work if they believe that the workplace conditions may cause injuries or damage to health. This procedure is formalised in collective bargaining agreements.

Health and safety expenses, RUB bn

Health and safety expenses

Health and safety expenses per employee, RUB '000

Health and safety expenses per employee

Provision of personal protective equipment

GRI 403-3

Due to the nature of its business, the Group’s employees are often exposed to hazardous and harmful workplace factors (underground work, operation and maintenance of mining equipment and heavy self-propelled vehicles, extreme climate, etc.). In addition to implementing technical and organisational safety measures, we provide them with personal protective equipment (PPE).

In line with the corporate standard, the Company’s production sites run preliminary tests on PPE, including the most advanced equipment from leading manufacturers. This is done to supply employees with best-in-class PPE.

Employees working in contaminated conditions also receive free-of-charge wash-off and decontaminating agents.

Approximately
3.2
RUB bn approximate worth of personal protective equipment purchased by the Company in 2021

Special assessment of working conditions

In 2021, a special assessment of working conditions covered more than 10,000 workplaces and over 19,000 employees, which amounted to some RUB 12 mln in expenses for the Group’s operations.

A special assessment of working conditions helps identify hazardous production factors. Whenever these are identified, the Company furnishes employees with free personal protective equipment (PPE), including respiratory protection (respirators, gas masks), hearing protection (earmuffs, earplugs), eye protection (glasses/goggles with UV filters, visors), skin protection (gloves, protective and regenerative creams, protective outerwear).

To effectively monitor safe working behaviour, the Company makes employees with a track record of up to three years wear red helmets with the word “Attention” and protective clothing with “Attention” badges.

OHS control and prevention

To improve safety culture and prevent workplace injuries, Nornickel regularly takes control and prevention measures, including:

  • second-party OHS management audits (cross-company audits of the Group companies involving the OHS heads and experts from other Group companies);
  • internal OHS management audits;
  • OHS monitoring at each facility, including multi-phase production site control and ad hoc, targeted and comprehensive OHS inspections;
  • safety behaviour audits;
  • compliance and certification audits as part of the 45001:2018 management system.

Health and safety competitions

In 2021, we launched team and individual competitions in occupational health and safety in line with the internal HSE standard. Team competitions were held across seven groups of Nornickel’s production facilities.

Results of individual competitions were announced with the following awards granted:

  • Best Health and Safety Head;
  • Best Health and Safety Line Manager;
  • Best Health and Safety Specialist;
  • Best Health and Safety Compliant Worker.

The Company also runs an ongoing Safe Work communications programme. In 2021, it focused on:

  • media support of key OHS initiatives;
  • demonstration of the management’s commitment to occupational safety (media publications, management meetings with employees);
  • updating OHS information on the corporate portal;
  • covering OHS competitions and announcing the best OHS manager, expert, and workplace;
  • making employees aware of the existing OHS situation in the Company, accidents, investigations, and actions taken.

Engagement of employees in safety management

GRI 403-4

To engage employees in safety management, most of the Group companies have in place joint health and safety committees (councils) made up of the management, employee and trade union representatives. The Group companies operating such joint committees employ over 69,000 people (around 92.4% of the Group’s average headcount). The Head Office does not have a joint committee (as there is no trade union in place, but representatives of the Norilsk trade union take part in HSE Committee meetings). On top of that, Norilsk Nickel Corporate University (an educational institution not involved in production) and NordStar Airlines (no proposals from trade unions have been received) do not have committees. Contractors are invited to joint committee meetings that deal with matters related to contractor employees.

Authorised representatives of trade unions and staff in occupational health and safety (949 employees) were elected to participate in preventive activities across the Group’s production units. In 2021, they took part in over 17,000 audits and submitted almost 5,000 health and safety improvement proposals.

Health and safety performance indicators for accident prevention

Indicator
2017
2018
2019
2020
2021

Audits conducted:

Indicator

by health and safety committees, ‘000

2017

> 30.8

2018

> 30.9

2019

>29.8

2020

> 48.5

2021

> 50.3

Indicator

Target audits conducted by managers, senior specialists and committees of the Group's facilities and business units, ‘000

2017

8.7

2018

9.7

2019

9.6

2020

10.6

2021

11.1

Indicator

Ad hoc audits, ‘000

2017

15.3

2018

15.7

2019

15.5

2020

27

2021

23

Indicator

Comprehensive audits of health and safety and relevant management systems

2017

221

2018

149

2019

126

2020

164

2021

182

Indicator

Coupons removed from the books of employees violating health and safety requirements*, ‘000

2017

2.9

2018

2.2

2019

1.8

2020

1.1

2021

1.1

Indicator

Employees subject to disciplinary action for the violation of health and safety requirements, ‘000

2017

7.9

2018

6.8

2019

6.3

2020

5

2021

3.3

Indicator

Employees with reduced bonus payments, ‘000

2017

> 13.6

2018

> 13

2019

> 11.9

2020

> 10

2021

> 8

Indicator

Total, RUB mln

2017

> 74

2018

> 70

2019

> 69

2020

> 59

2021

> 66

Indicator

Employees incentivised for health and safety involvement and lower workplace injury rate as per the audit results, ‘000

2017

> 5.6

2018

> 6.4

2019

> 6.5

2020

> 5

2021

> 5

Indicator

Total, RUB mln

2017

> 41

2018

> 52

2019

> 57

2020

> 59

2021

> 69

Health and safety topics covered in formal agreements with trade unions

SASB EM-MM-310a.1

Nornickel has collective bargaining agreements signed with employee representatives (including trade union organisations). The agreements contain occupational health and safety provisions and are entered into by the Group and most of its production companies. They cover more than 69,900 employees of the Group (approximately 95% of the Group’s average headcount).

OHS training

GRI 403-5/ SASB EM-MM-320a.1

One of the key strategies to increasing occupational safety is improving OHS qualifications of staff. To this end, Nornickel organises regular briefing sessions and training courses on occupational health for its employees. We introduced dedicated software modules for specific mining jobs in order to provide health and safety briefings.

In 2021, OHS precertification briefing, basic training and certification covered more than 25,000 employees of the Group. The Group’s health and safety training expenses exceeded RUB 102 mln.

In addition to training, some of our divisions take steps to test and consolidate the knowledge of applicable safety requirements for different disciplines. An example is the comprehensive Pre-Shift Examiner system in Polar Division. Employees are required to pass a test before starting their work shift.

In 2021, Norilsktransgaz had the latest equipment installed at its health and safety classroom in Dudinka, deploying VR training simulators and implementing the VRPalliative hardware and software system to improve and stabilise the emotional and psychological condition of employees.

Prevention of occupational diseases

GRI 403-3

Nornickel cares about the health of its employees and works to prevent occupational diseases.

In 2021, the Group’s costs related to medical examinations and maintenance of medical aid posts amounted to RUB 505 mln and RUB 276 mln, respectively.

The Company allocates funds and ensures regular health monitoring of personnel. Employees undergo compulsory pre-employment, regular and ad hoc medical examinations and check-ups. Those who are involved in hazardous production are subject to additional examinations held at least once in five years by occupational pathology centres or other organisations authorised to conduct pre-employment and regular check-ups. These serve to assess occupational health fitness and determine if the disease is job-related.

The Company provides employees working in hazardous conditions with nutrition, milk, and other equivalent food products for therapeutic purposes in compliance with the applicable Russian laws and corporate policies.

In addition, medical aid posts are in place to perform pre-shift and pre-trip checkups and provide medical assistance to employees upon request.

Corporate Healthcare project

Employee health is a key resource to ensure sustainable and efficient development of the Company. The Group is running the Corporate Healthcare project across its core regions of operation.

Its key activity is to set up a chain of healthcare centres with the latest medical equipment and highly qualified professionals. In December 2021, the first corporate healthcare centre opened its doors in Norilsk, providing a wide range of services and focusing on Nornickel’s voluntary healthcare insurance programme. It is equipped in line with European standards and has a medical information system in place. The centre offers almost 250 healthcare services and brings together personnel from a variety of regions — Moscow, the Kaliningrad and Orenburg regions, Republics of Altai, Bashkortostan, Yakutia, the Far East, and other Russian regions. The Company provides modern housing arrangements to each nonresident healthcare professional. During the initial stage, doctors also helped state-run healthcare facilities, where they were employed on a part-time basis. The centre’s premises are renovated in line with corporate standards. The Group operates the facility under the Z-Clinic brand, established for Zapolyarye Health Resort and currently developed by the Corporate Health Centre. This supports succession and helps create single standards of healthcare for employees and their families.

We plan to develop a corporate chain of healthcare centres, with new clinics to be included. Each of them is established from scratch and is intended to increase healthcare capacities in the region without replacing existing ones. The key centres included into the approved programme of projects are:

  • medical centre in the central part of Norilsk with in-house laboratory, dental department, and radiology centre, including MRI: to be commissioned in 2024–2025;
  • medical centre in Talnakh: to be commissioned in 2023–2024;
  • medical centre in Kayerkan: to be commissioned in 2023–2024;
  • medical centre in Dudinka: to be commissioned in 2022;
  • medical centre in Monchegorsk: to be commissioned in 2023–2024;
  • MRI centre in Monchegorsk, with preliminary inclusion into the government guarantee programme: to be commissioned in 2022.

The Company is also planning to develop small-scale healthcare departments in remote locations (Snezhnogorsk, etc.).

Going forward, the Company aims to set up Nornickel’s Competence Centre for Corporate Healthcare, which will be responsible for coordinating training and upskilling programmes, telemedicine, etc.

In addition, together with the government the Company is running partnership projects to establish healthcare centres across its regions of presence to serve all local residents under the compulsory health insurance programme.

By 2025, Nornickel plans to provide its employees and their families with an easy and quick access to quality healthcare in line with the latest standards.

In addition, a programme is in place to upgrade the Company’s healthcare facilities and medical examination rooms to perform pre-trip and pre-shift checkups. The first upgraded and re-equipped facilities will be made available in 2022. Efforts are ongoing to use them for the establishment of the Workshop Healthcare Service as a preventive healthcare unit.

The Company runs comprehensive inspections of healthcare systems and areas in cities and towns where its employees reside.

Work is actively underway to promote a healthy lifestyle. As part of the programme, Nornickel relies on a comprehensive approach to automate healthcare services and apply the latest IT solutions in healthcare. In 2021, the medical information system was up and running at Zapolyarye Health Resort and the medical centre in Norilsk. In 2022, we expect it to be rolled out to the Company’s medical aid posts and the Kola Peninsula. A digital laboratory of healthcare services was put in place, already coming up with three initiatives, including the development of a modern self-test kiosk. Nornickel is also looking into potentially integrating with staterun healthcare providers and setting up shared medical records.

Emergency preparedness

Nornickel’s facilities remain prepared for any emergencies, including emergency containment and response. This is vital as the Company operates more than 300 hazardous production facilities that rely on hazardous substances in their operational processes. Preparedness for emergencies is in line with Federal Law No. 116-FZ On Industrial Safety of Hazardous Production Facilities dated 21 July 1997 («Federal Law No. 116-FZ”).

The underlying document for emergency containment and response plans is the Regulations on Containment and Elimination of Accident Consequences at Hazardous Production Facilities approved by Resolution No. 1437 of the Russian Government dated 15 September 2020. They are approved by heads (deputy heads) of production units that operate such facilities, and heads (deputy heads responsible for approving action plans) of professional emergency rescue services and units engaged for emergency containment and response.

Emergency preparedness system at hazardous production facilities

EMERGENCY CONTAINMENT AND RESPONSE PLANS
AT HAZARDOUS PRODUCTION FACILITIES (HAZARD CLASSES 1, 2, 3)
AGREEMENTS WITH PROFESSIONAL EMERGENCY RESCUE SERVICES AND ORGANISATIONS ACROSS THE COMPANY’S FOOTPRINT
AUXILIARY MINE RESCUE TEAMS AT POLAR DIVISION AND KOLA MMC MONTHLY TRAINING AND EXERCISES IN NEAR-REAL CONDITIONS
DRILLS INVOLVING EMPLOYEE AND EMERGENCY RESCUE SERVICES
PROVISIONING FOR EMERGENCY CONTAINMENT AND RESPONSE AT HAZARDOUS PRODUCTION FACILITIES
THE GROUP COMPANIES PUT IN PLACE SURVEILLANCE, WARNING, COMMUNICATION
AND SUPPORT SYSTEMS IN CASE OF EMERGENCY

The plans are reviewed and approved in a timely manner, their effective periods being:

for underground mining facilities
6 months
for open-pit mining facilities
1 year
for hazard classes 1, 2 and 3 facilities*
5 years

To ensure readiness for containment and elimination of accident consequences at hazardous production facilities, Polar Division signed contracts with a professional emergency rescue unit for mine rescue services and the maintenance of auxiliary rescue teams’ equipment. Auxiliary mine rescue teams were set up at Polar Division and Kola MMC hazardous production facilities (hazard classes 1 and 2) engaged in underground mining operations. Polar Division, Medvezhy Ruchey, Norilsk Production Support Complex, GRK Bystrinskoe, and Kola MMC hazardous facilities put in place surveillance, warning, communication, and support systems to rely on in case of emergencies. Mines are equipped with radio and positioning systems for employees, and telemetry system for underground machinery to track their locations. Hazard class 1 and 2 facilities operate local warning systems.

At the Group’s hazardous production facilities, drills are held regularly and personnel are trained to deal with accidents, incidents, and emergencies.