Case Studies

These case studies illustrate how Alcoa is acting upon its commitment to sustainable development throughout the world. We are pleased with this progress, but look forward to achieving even more.

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Increased commitment towards the Deschambault community
The Deschambault Smelter demonstrated increased commitment towards the community during the public consultation that was part of the permitting process.  In April 2007, it invited the public and local reporters to a presentation on the differences between the former authorization certificates and the new integrated permits.  Over 70 people attended the presentation.

2008 — Environment

Alcoa takes active part in the PRRI

The Programme de Réduction des Rejets Industriels (PRRI) (Industrial Waste Reduction Program) of Quebec’s Ministère du Développement durable, de l’Environnement et des Parcs aims to gradually reduce industrial waste.  This strategy targets some 250-300 companies in the industrial sector whose discharge of contaminants can have a potentially significant impact on the surrounding area.
In the wake of an initiative in the pulp and paper sector, the first to be subject to the program in 1993, the process began for companies in the mines and metallurgy sector, including aluminium smelters.
The plants that are subject to the program receive an individualized integrated permit that outlines the ministry’s requirements and enables them to better develop and implement a plan to reduce its discharge of contaminants where needed.  Renewable every five years, the integrated permit identifies the points of discharge for the various contaminants, as well as the related requirements (standards, monitoring, reports).  Every type of waste is considered (wastewater, air emissions, residual waste, noise) and every receiving environment (water, air, land).  It also covers any other operating condition determined by the ministry, as well as some studies on specific contaminants.
The process is done in several phases and through close collaboration between the operator and the ministry.  It also involves a public consultation.
Alcoa plants
In light of the new legal requirements, the Alcoa Canada Primary Metals smelters in Baie-Comeau, Bécancour and Deschambault have all completed this rigorous process and now have integrated permits under the PRRI.  In fact, the Bécancour Smelter was the first smelter in Quebec to do so in July 2007.
For each of our plants, modifications were made to the requirements of their existing authorization certificates, specifically in regards to monitoring of dust collector and water quality.
PRRI studies
In addition to meeting the new requirements of their integrated permits, three Alcoa smelters will also take part in detailed studies on certain important environmental issues related to the aluminium sector.  The topics of these studies and their assignment were determined by the ministry in collaboration with the Canadian Aluminium Association.
For more information on the PRRI, go to (in French only)