Outokumpu Chrome Oy


The Kemi Mine is owned by Outokumpu Chrome Oy, a subsidiary of Outokumpu Oyj. It is located in Elijärvi, in the municipality of Keminmaa, to the north of Kemi. The Kemi Mine is the largest underground mine in Finland, with an annual production capacity of 2.7 million tonnes of ore. It is also part of the integrated ferrochrome and stainless steel manufacturing chain owned by Outokumpu in the Kemi-Tornio region. The Kemi mine is the only chromium mine in the European Union.

The company is committed to start the adoption of the new sustainability standard for mining in Finland.

The purpose of the Kemi Mine in the long production chain from chromite ore to stainless steel is to produce concentrates from ore as raw material for the manufacture of ferrochrome at the ferrochrome plant located in Tornio. The chrome contained in the ferrochrome generated as a product at the ferrochrome plant – used as an alloying material in the steel manufacturing process – is what makes the steel manufactured at the Tornio steel plant stainless.

The Kemi Mine opened in 1968, less than ten years after the orebody was found. Chromite ore was extracted from open-pit mines reaching depths of approximately 200 meters until 2005. In 2003, underground mining began. Open-pit mining ended at the Kemi Mine in December 2005 with the final open-pit blasting.

The underground mine is accessible either via an incline ramp or a mine shaft. Ore extraction started at level 500, from which the process proceeds upwards towards the bottom of the open-pit. Fully excavated primary stopes are filled with waste rock. From each stope, the ore is carried to an underground crushing station. The crushed ore is transferred via a conveyor belt to crushed ore silos located close to the mine shaft and further to a skip via a measuring pocket. The ore is hoisted through the shaft to an unloading silo located in a 70-meter-tall lifting tower, from where it is forwarded to the concentration process.

Ore is concentrated at concentration plant located at the Kemi Mine into lump and fine concentrate. In the first phase, the ore is crushed for further processing. At the lump concentration plant, lump concentrate is separated from the crushed ore using the sink-and-float method.  After that at fine concentration plant, the ore is grinded with rod mill and concentrated with gravity by spiral separators into fine concentrate. Concentrates are transported to Tornio by trucks. From fine concentrate plant, tailings are pumped into tailings pond area, where solids are deposited and water goes to clarifying ponds. Concentrator plant takes process water from  clarifying ponds.

Environmental impacts from Kemi Mine is minimal due to chromium oxide ore, with low leachability and gravity based separation methods with no chemicals and process water recycling.


Toiminta-alue: Keminmaa

Yhteystiedot vastuullisuusasioissa:

amuli Nikula
+358 (016) 4521 (switchboard)

Company’s corporate responsibility report http://www.outokumpu.com/fi/vastuullisuus/Sivut/default.aspx

The company in figures in 2015

  • Tuotantomäärä: A total of 946,188 tonnes of chromium concentrate: lumpy concentrate 269,914 tonnes, and fine concentrate 676,274 tonnes.
  • Kokonaislouhinta: 3.04 million tonnes (ore 65,3%, waste rock 34,7%)
  • Raportoidut malmivarat: 44.6 million tonnes (Cr2O3 25.9%) (FRB standard and the JORC code)
  • Raportoidut mineraalivarannot: 101 million tonnes (Cr2O3 29.5%) (FRB standard and the JORC code)
  • Toiminnan aloitusvuosi: 1968
  • Kaivoksen arvioitu jäljellä oleva elinikä: 30-50 years
  • Kaivosalueen pinta-ala: 990 hectares (mine concession)
  • Malminetsintäalueen pinta-ala: -
  • Omien työntekijöiden määrä: 191
  • Työntekijöiden pääasialliset asuinkunnat: Kemi 51%, Keminmaa 27%, Tornio 13%, Tervola 2%, Rovaniemi 2%, others: a total of 5%
  • Vakituisten urakoitsijoiden määrä: 215
  • Käyttökate EBITDA: Unreported
  • Maksettu yhteisövero: Unreported


Yrityksen ympäristökäytannöt:
  • Location in a nature reserve*: yes
  • Environmental management system**: yes
  • An environmental impact assessment required (in accordance with the EIA Act): yes, the latest one from 2009
  • Measurements of dust: yes
  • Measurements of noise: yes
  • Measurements of vibration; yes
  • Environmental impact assessment completed: yes
  • Deviations from the environmental permit (2015): no
  • Environmental collateral exists: yes
  • Closure plan for the mine exists: yes
  • Plan for the shutdown of the mine in unexpected situations: yes
* Partly in a bog protection area SSO120497 in Elijärvenviia. The protection area was founded after the mine was established. **Certification in accordance with the ISO 14001:2004 standard

Keskeiset tunnusluvut:


  • Amount of extractive waste: 996,248 t (waste rock 0%, tailings 83,4%, and shear rock 16.6%)
  • Utilisation of waste rock: 100% of waste rock is used. An amount of 42,390 tonnes of old heaps of waste rock were used
  • Fuel consumption: 21.5GWh (with non-renewable fuels amounting to 100%)
  • Other energy consumption (electricity and heat): electricity 70.3GWh (of which the proportion of renewable energy is 24%, non-renewable 76%), heat 10.5GWh (of which the proportion of is renewable 69%, non-renewable 27%, and peat 4%)
  • Water consumption: 2.7 million m3 (of which natural raw water accounts for 0,1 million m3)
  • Number of dams in the mining area: 8 (Class 2)
  • Number of endangered species occurring in the operational area: 0
  • Usage of chemicals dangerous to the environment: light fuel oil (H4111) 1,658 tonnes; heavy fuel oil (R52/53, H412) 238 tonnes; diesel (H411) 150 tonnes
  • The recycling ponds of the mine process water have created rich fish and birdlife in the mining area, which has contributed to natural diversity

Personnel and safety

Yrityksen henkilöstökäytännöt:
  • Employee initiative programme exists: yes
  • Goal and development dialogue programme covering the entire personnel Personnel training plan: yes
  • Equality plan: yes
  • Personnel representation in company management: yes
  • Occupational and safety management system*: yes
  • All personnel working in the area are in possession of an occupational health card: yes
  • Company rescue unit: yes
* Uncertified; also applied to contractors

Keskeiset tunnusluvut vuonna:


  • Average number of training days per year: 2.3 days / employee
  • Absence due to sickness (excluding contractors): 3.81%
  • Lost-time injury frequency rate: LTi: 4.2; Tri: 16.9%
  • Working time systems currently in use: 1-shift system, 2-shift system, 3-shift system, 8-hour working day system, flexitime, working day system (Mon to Fri), 6:4 system (6 days of work, 4 days of leisure)

Impact on the use of the neighbouring areas and the sources of livelihood

Vaikutukset paikallisiin elinkeinoihin: No mining is carried out in the reindeer management area. Authorities, the municipality, local media, local inhabitants and landowners, educational institutes, service and material providers, environmental organisations and associations have been recognised as the key stakeholders of the company, and are taken into account in the company’s environmental collaboration.

Vaikutukset lähialueen virkistyskäyttöön:

None. In order to prevent harm to fishery and fishing, approximately 6,000 zander are stocked in the sea areas off the city of Kemi.

Vaikutukset maisema-arvoon:

Landscape values have been taken into account in the operations of the company. The waste management plan takes account of the landscaping.

Interaction with stakeholders


  • The company arranges neighbours’ days (once or twice per year), during which the activities of the mine are presented and the people have an opportunity to converse with the representatives of the mine
  • The company is engaged in continuous collaboration with educational institutions (practical training, participation in training and similar), which has brought training closer to real working life
  • The representatives of municipal administration have visited the company on one to three occasion per year (to encourage familiarisation on the part of decision-makers with mining)
  • A channel is available for stakeholders to submit feedback

Tutkimus- ja yhteistyöhankkeet:

  • Developing environmental and geodynamical safety related to mine closure in the Barents region (ENVIMINE)
  • Solutions for Control of Nitrogen Discharges at Mines and Quarries (MINIMAN)
  • Collaboration and openness regarding various queries and projects (such as the Network for Sustainable Mining and this query)
  • Particles and noise in a sustainable mining environment (HIME)