Environmental Protection at Buffalo

Aurubis Buffalo, located in the state of New York, is about a half-hour away from Niagara Falls by car. Copper products have been fabricated here since 1906.

The completely integrated plant with 650 employees includes a copper and brass foundry, a hot rolling mill and cold rolling mills, a number of annealing furnaces, and a number of longitudinal slitting machines to produce strips with a variety of copper alloys, for example for connectors, telecommunications, and electrical applications. In 2003 the plant became the first rolling mill for copper alloys in North America to earn TS 16949 certification, a quality management certificate based on ISO 9001. The investment program to modernize the plant is continuously updated.

All of the foundry’s off-gases are cleaned with filters before entering the atmosphere. The filter dust that accumulates in the process is sent offsite for proper disposal. The acidic rinse water from copper/alloy cleaning operations is neutralized in the onsite wastewater treatment plant. The filter cake produced in the wastewater treatment plant is sent offsite for recycling. All the electricity is sourced from renewable energy generated from the Niagara Falls electricity generation plant.

The Aurubis Buffalo site has been working jointly with the environmental team to increase education and awareness of chemical exposure, handling chemicals, managing hazardous & non-waste, process improvements to reduce waste generation, and environmental compliance requirements. Aurubis Buffalo ensures that the plant is in compliance with federal and state regulatory requirements and laws.

We are continually raising awareness of new and changing environmental regulations through an education program that all employees participate in, which includes executive management and hourly workers to ensure all employees at Aurubis Buffalo are aware of federal and state regulatory systems.

Beyond the central environmental targets, additional activities were carried out for the benefit of the employees and the environment during the reporting period. For example:

  1. Development of a waste reduction plan
  2. Waste separation activities
  3. Compressed air reduction through system improvements
  4. Ventilation improvements in the Cast Shop

Environmental Protection Buffalo – facts & figures


Decrease of drinking water withdrawal 

 

Description of measure:

  • Reduced the amount of water usage coming from the municipal water authority from 1,550,000 m3 in 2013 to 1,050,000 m3 in 2017

Date of completion:

  • Ongoing

 


Decrease of waste acid treated in the onsite wastewater treatment plant

 

Description of measure:

  • Reduced the amount of waste acid treated in the wastewater treatment plant

Date of completion:

  • Ongoing

 

Current environmental targets and measures

Description:

  • Wastewater treatment plant upgrades to improve efficiency and automation.

Status:

  • 85 % complete

 

 

Description:

  • Upgrades to containment & transfer areas

 

Status:

  • Ongoing

 

Description:

  • Auditing of compliance status for gap and program development needs

 

Status:

  • Ongoing

 

Description:

  • WWTP upgrades, documentation of procedures, and employee training

 

Status:

  • 85 % complete

 

Description:

  • Review of all environmental programs by outside consultant for regulatory compliance.  First one completed in June 2019

 

Status:

  • Ongoing

 

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