Holcim Spain and the IUCN Mediterranean Programme have signed an agreement in April 2009. This sets another milestone in the relationship between IUCN and the Holcim Group, one of the world's leading suppliers of cement and aggregates.
The IUCN-Holcim relationship: Linking a global to a local approach
A global four year agreement between IUCN and Holcim was signed in February 2007 with the aim of developing robust ecosystem conservation standards for the Holcim Group and contributing to sector-wide improvements in the cement and related sectors. An Independent Expert Panel was then established, led by Dr Christoph Imboden, with the mandate to provide independent recommendations to Holcim in relation to their biodiversity policy and related management tools. To complement and strengthen the activities and results linked to the global agreement, Holcim and IUCN promoted the establishment of separate but synergic country based and project focused agreements between Holcim country operations and IUCN Regional or Country offices. As of today, country based agreements are active in Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Costa Rica, Nicaragua and Spain.
The most recent one is the agreement signed in April 2009 between Holcim Spain and IUCN Mediterranean Programme. IUCN Med will provide guidance on the integration of ecological aspects in the restoration plan of the quarry Torredonjimeno (Jaen, Jamilena municipality) and an aggregate quarry through site visits, expert advice, and engagement of local communities. IUCN Med will also contribute with a technical chapter in the Holcim Spain publication about the restoration of the Gravera el Puente, in the Vega Baja del Jarama, nearby Aranjuez. The quarry has been operational in the area for around ten years, and restoration efforts have produced good results. The purpose of this publication will be to highlight risks and opportunities relevant to the restoration of quarries at the national level. The two parties will also use these activities to define the scope and modalities for a larger follow up agreement.