Our Environment

rekultivace_frantisek_2_.jpgThe mining of coal and the production of coke have an impact on the environment. In Northern Moravia, where coal mining began in the 18th century, mining activities led to fundamental changes in the landscape, demography, social conditions and the environment. OKD is fully aware of its responsibilities stemming from the impact of mining and coke production. The company therefore continually implements projects that eliminate these effects.


The most conspicuous manifestation of these projects comprises decontamination and reclamation work. Not all consequences of mining are negative. Mining activities have given rise to numerous biologically valuable sites, such as wetlands and lake ecosystems, providing habitats for species pushed out of areas inhabited by man. Slag heaps have also proved a boon to nature, becoming home to vegetation and plant species that thrive in hot and dry environments.


In the field of environmental protection, OKD has had long-term relationships with numerous notable entities and institutions, such as the Czech Mining Authority, the Ministry of the Environment of the Czech Republic, the local governments, mining communities and environmental organisations. The monitoring and management of environmental impacts focuses primarily on the protection of water and air against pollution, waste and hazardous waste management, and the reclamation of landscapes surrounding the company’s pits. In 2013, supervising bodies of the relevant authorities found no significant shortcomings in the monitored areas.


Coal mining mainly affects local landscapes and the environment in the following ways:


  • Surface effects of underground mining

The degree and extent of changes on the surface, mainly subsidence, are directly proportionate to the size of the coal strata, the mined area and the intensity of the mining works; the effects usually last somewhat longer than the actual underground mining.


  • Slag heaps

OKD has in the long term striven to return slag heaps back to utility as a substantial landscape element in the areas of Ostrava and Karviná. Tailings are currently used as a material in road construction as well as a landscaping material. Some of the heaps have begun to turn green through natural processes. Controlled reclamations of the heaps take place where necessary.


  • Sedimentation tanks for washing dirt

Sludge is no longer produced due to advances in processing technology. Historical sludges remain in the old decantation reservoirs. Excavated decantation reservoirs are subject to regular decontamination and reclamation.


  • Drainage of mine water

Water is drained from pits in accordance with legal regulations and watercourse limits. Mine water is not only a factor in environmental pollution and protection – it is also continuously used for spa operations in the Darkov and Klimkovice resorts.


  • Emissions of solid pollutants