Europe - Discovery and learning for a young audience
European Minerals Day was an opportunity for the Performance & Filtration Minerals Europe Division to raise public awareness of its businesses, particularly with young people.
Seven of the Division’s sites took part in the initiative. In Beverley (UK) and Villers (France), school students toured a quarry and learned about biodiversity, both today and 200 million years ago. The young audience was excited to take part in a fossil hunt and a presentation on the different stages in restoration and the use of minerals. The Gran Bianco site (Italy) organized workshops for pupils at a local elementary school in cooperation with a children’s hospital charity. At MikroMineral (Turkey) employees’ children were invited to an open day and learnt about the environmental benefits of carbonates. Alicante (Spain), Axat and Murat (France) took the opportunity to present their issues and plans to local councilors.
This coordinated participation earned the jury’s special award for Community Relations in our in-house Sustainable Development challenge.
In total, 34 sites representing all of Imerys’ business groups took part in European Minerals Day in Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Sweden, Turkey and the United Kingdom, but also outside Europe (Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Chile, China, India, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan and the United States).
The Imerys Ceramics France unit in Beaujard (Seine-et-Marne) hosted the kick-off event for the Day in France. Local and national elected representatives visited the plant and the restored Montpothier quarry, which was listed as a site of ecological, floral and faunal interest in 2000.
From Friday May 13 to Sunday May 15, 2011, more than 200 events – site and quarry tours, restoration or environmental project presentations – were organized for European Minerals Days in 32 countries (including 11 outside Europe). The aim was to improve the public’s knowledge of the mineral industry’s issues. Almost 30,000 visitors were welcomed for the event.
The focus was particularly on biodiversity conservation, with examples from restored mining sites.