France – Compensatory Afforestation
Imerys Terre Cuite, concerned with the preservation of the environment, sets the example by implementing sustainable initiatives. The afforestation of the Sereines mining site invites nature to claim its rights.
The Imerys Terre Cuite site at St. Marcellin (Building Materials Division) is working on opening a new clay quarry at Trémoulin. The Sereines extraction site is progressively rehabilitated and replanted to minimize the environmental impact of the activities.
This ambitious project has required the cooperation of all parties involved: local politicians, administration authorities (Prefect, DREALE), community associations (ASSEN: Saint-Marcellinoise Association for the Protection of the Environment) and environmental activists (FRAPNA). They observe, participate and guide the development of this rehabilitation project.
The recommendations from FRAPNA (Rhône-Alpes Federation for the Protection of Nature) were followed closely. The species found in Tremoulin will be planted by hand in Sereines: about 4,200 oak, ash, cheery, rosehips, hawthorn and dogwood trees (including some specimens that have already relocated thanks to the diffusion natural seeds). Later, invasive species found in the area, such as the acacia, will naturally complement the planted trees.
While the rehabilitation of the Tremoulin area is spread over a period of 30 years, the reforestation of the Sereines site should only last five years. As the area is completely cleared from mining activities, the local wildlife will have slowly and fully migrated to the replanted area, which will then be able to accommodate the ecosystem in its entirety.