Formally, the project preparation process, including public consultation and level of environmental impact, for the given project constitutes the responsibility of its investor. Budimex SA, acting as the general contractor, has no direct impact on these issues. However, being a designer on a given contract, it is fully responsible for the project with regard to environmental and social aspects. Regardless of the role and scope of responsibility, one of areas of our 2016-2020 CSR Strategy is to be a good neighbour, guest and partner for local communities, which obligates us, among others, to limit the negative impact on inhabitants of adjacent areas. Our objective is to avoid conflicts against the environmental background. This obligation applies also to our subcontractors, and the key is to carefully prepare and organize construction sites, facilities, proper routing of technological roads, so that they are as troubleless as possible from the point of view of road participants and surrounding residents. Construction site facilities, warehouses, yards and transportation bases are firstly located on already developed and transformed territories. If possible, the construction site is located at a safe distance from inhabited areas. In the course of the project implementation, we transport materials and raw materials mainly on already designated right-of-way. After completion of works, we restore the state of the environment from before the construction, as far as possible. Earlier we protect trunks and tree roots from damage caused by heavy equipment, we fence habitats of animals and plants. We protect water reservoirs from potential contamination by chemical substances, such as diesel oil from construction vehicles and machinery, originating from the construction site.
Environmental amenities most often concern the course of roads in the vicinity of households and passages for animals, according to their migration routes and ecotones in forests along routes that protect the ecosystem. In order to protect the environment, water drainage systems and transparent sound-absorbing screens are also created.
We conduct compensatory plantings or re-use at later construction earth layers (humus) removed during works. A popular activity is constituted by the so-called metaplantation, which involves moving plants from the construction site to a new site of the same requirements and qualities. If it is necessary to backfill a small reservoir, amphibians, reptiles and birds living in this location are transferred to a safe place upon their capture. In 2018, we moved 933 individuals of amphibians, such as great crested newt, common newt, common frog, 9 individuals of reptiles, including common lizard, and if birds are concerned, a new place was found by 10 sand martins.
The work schedule depends on the natural cycle, which, for instance, affects the suspension of works in the migration period of forest animals, amphibians or fish or in the bird breeding period. All works comply with legal requirements, including those regarding Natura 2000 areas. There is also conducted an environmental control of the impact zone and habitats on a given territory, while environmental observation is conducted after the project completion. For all investments, which may potentially significantly affect the surrounding environment, a report on the environmental impact is prepared, in accordance with applicable legal regulations. Works on the report are conducted with experts from various fields, such as ornithology, herpetology, botany, etc. The reports lists potential risks and recommended solutions, which will mitigate effects of the given project as much as possible. All pro-environmental actions are supported by environmental specialists, who monitor the situation on an ongoing basis, provide applications and recommendations, such as naturalists, botanists, ichthyologists, dendrologists. Most construction sites are covered by environmental supervision in accordance with environmental decisions and contracts with an entity ordering a given investment. Sometimes supervision is carried out at the request of the contract management or preventively, when the law does not require such supervision. In this way, Budimex implements the precautionary principle.
One of the accomplished goals of our environmental team for 2018 was the implementation of the visual identification system for environmental protection and the environmental protection standard system. On construction sites there are boards informing on the location of the construction waste landfill site, place to clear pumps after concreting, where special care should be taken due to the occurrence of protected species or tree protection zones. This information facilitates the employees and subcontractors to take care of the environmental protection on a given investment.
In the Contractor's Code, the Budimex Group obligates its subcontractors to respect legal norms and environmental decisions on the area of the given investment. Subcontractors, interested in cooperation with Budimex, are required to read, among others, the guidelines concerning our environmental standards, while submitting their offer. Environmental requirements are included in an annex to agreements – "Environmental Protection Requirements." One of the standards in force on construction sites of the Budimex Group is to have a so-called environmental first aid kit, which is a set for quick containment and removal of spills of substances harmful to the environment, such as oil, petroleum products. The kits are placed in marked places and the information concerning their location is widely provided to the employees. In accordance with the precautionary principle, any potential contamination is treated as a threat to the environment until its type and source are determined. Another requirement is to manage the one's waste, keeping its records and collect it. Every subcontractor must respond to emergency situations and environmental incidents in accordance with the system and standards of Budimex SA.
Every subcontractor is going through training concerning procedures applicable in the field of environmental protection and rules of conduct in the event of failure. Their equipment is also subject to technical efficiency assessment. The supervisory personnel of a given construction site receives specialist training in environmental protection, while the rest of employees take part in regular training courses “Training in the Area of OHS Management and Environmental Protection on a contract”.
The Environmental Protection Team, which carries out inspections and audits regarding the compliance with adopted environmental protection rules on executed contracts, is responsible for the efficient implementation of the Policy. In 2018, no incidents or environmental emergencies occurred, which could result in harm to the environment. No fines or others sanctions were imposed on the Budimex Group due to violation of environmental regulations. No significant substance spillages were observed in 2018.
In 2018, 1,163 subcontractors (100%) were subjected to initial qualification and 5,329 final assessments summing up cooperation were conducted, within the framework of which environmental issues were also analysed. Irregularities were found in 35 cases. Corrective actions were taken with respect to all of them. The Ethics Commission received no reports concerning violation of environmental protection. Risks associated with irregularities attributable to subcontractors concern usually contamination of soil and groundwater with petroleum products, paints and solvents. It is closely connected with skills of the subcontractors’ employees regarding the equipment service and good technical condition of machinery. In order to avoid such situations, subcontractors are provided with training regarding environmental procedures before entering the given construction site.