Why is this important?
We contribute to community development through our community and social investments, focused on preventing or mitigating social risks, positioning OMV Petrom as a socially responsible company and changing our local communities for the better.
In accordance with UN Principles on Business and Human Rights, we perform our actions in communities with the goal of promoting the United Nations’ 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. We committed to assess community grievance mechanisms of all sites against UN Effectiveness Criteria by 2025, maintain social license to operate through yearly Community Relations and Community development strategies, plans and budgets, based on Social Impact Needs and Risks assessment in OMV Petrom operations.
Our assessments and plans cover the entire OMV Petrom Group, in terms of social sponsoring and social projects.
We measure our community investment, impact, the number of volunteers and their hours, the number of beneficiaries reached and share of our local communities assisted.
Consultation is conducted at early stages of a project in the SIA framework and ongoing consultation mechanisms available through our community grievance mechanisms.
Our social projects are prioritized, planned, and a budget is allocated yearly.
We screen our projects to minimize the communities’ risks and work with local people to prevent, reduce and manage effects that occur.
We offer employees opportunities to actively engage in driving responsible and sustainable behavior.
Community Consultation and Social Impact Assessments
Our community relations and development management process is based on centralized policies and targets to be implemented by locally responsible staff with local resources. Before starting a project in our communities, we conduct a Social Impact Assessment (SIA), which includes free and priory informed consultation and consent of local stakeholders. In specific cases, the SIA is integrated into the Environmental Impact Assessment (ESIA) to foster synergies and efficiencies. The SIA aims to ensure that the local communities’ views are incorporated and addressed throughout all phases of the project life cycle: commissioning, operational phase, and decommissioning or abandonment. We also pay particular attention to any possible impact on human rights. Based on the internal regulation for conducting SIAs, we include a baseline study, community needs assessments, stakeholder analyses, and a study of social risks associated with the project. Whenever it is needed, SIAs are conducted in a participatory manner by directly consulting with potentially affected communities. Our standards require that the outcomes of the SIA are communicated to affected stakeholders.
Based on the SIA’s outcome, we further develop and implement site-specific strategies for community relations and development, stakeholder engagement plans as well as Community Grievance Mechanisms.
To ensure a transparent community relationship process, we comply with national legislation, financial requirements, and international standards. We have developed a specific set of internal standards, procedures, and directives for the processes: Community Relations and Communities Development, the Stakeholder Engagement, the Upstream Engagement Process of Community Engagement, the Sponsorship Strategy and the Grievance Mechanism.
The Community Relations and Development Guideline procedure was updated in 2020. The results of our community involvement projects are monitored and measured through pre-set KPIs and baseline studies.
We maintain regular communication with our communities and with major stakeholders. We also bring our contribution to local development through community or social investments. The investments are prioritized based on the local needs identified through the SIA process or during the ongoing consultations with the local communities for developing or revising the yearly development plans.
Our community and social investments are focused on preventing or mitigating social risks and positioning OMV Petrom as part of the social fabric. These also include knowledge transfer initiatives aimed at building the potential workforce’s local technical capacity (e.g., scholarships for students who take part in vocational schools, requalification training for vulnerable people in Upstream communities). In case of decommissioning or exit, our community relations team ensures that potential social impacts are addressed by establishing targeted community engagement plans, social impact assessment, and management plans and developing exit strategies for ongoing community development projects.
The OMV Petrom Sustainability corporate level function governs and steers the implementation of the community relations and development plans in Upstream and Downstream, receives regular reporting and feedback from stakeholders, monitors and ensures that the Group guidelines, policies, and regulations are correctly implemented. The management process of community relations is set up based on centrally governed policies, responsibilities, targets, and locally engaged resources. We hold structured, regular alignment meetings with our community development specialists to monitor and steer local implementation of our site-specific community relations and development strategies and plans. Community relations and development management activities are designed in each business division in accordance with their respective business strategies.
Needs Assessments and prioritization
In our assessment, we prioritize projects with a potential to generate long-term societal value and make lasting change to beneficiaries’ lives. Community and social investments are aligned with the SDGs and the community needs identified during SIAs and our continuous community consultation process.
We aim to implement our projects in partnership with local stakeholders (public authorities, non-governmental organizations) to ensure a maximum social return on our investment. Key OMV Petrom focus areas for our community and social investments include health, education and environmental protection. Community development strategies for our Upstream, Downstream Oil and Downstream Gas Divisions are revised yearly, and the project plans are designed based on consultation with the community, with major stakeholders (e.g., grass roots organization, schools, local public institutions, NGOs, Department for Child Protection, county inspectorates). Our planning includes a final selection of projects and budget allocation.
In 2021, we invested over EUR 11 mn in projects mainly for environment, education and health that covered 100% of our local communities. Through our community programs and social investments, we had over 100,000 beneficiaries, over 180 scholarships. We continued to get involved in the communities where we activate by supporting the medical system to face the COVID-19 pandemic and facilitating the access of vulnerable children to on-line school programs, through IT equipment and meal vouchers. Furthermore, we also supported initiatives to train teachers and help them adapt to the new context brought by the pandemic and shift to online teaching. Our progress is presented below. Our social projects, especially volunteering activities were developed taking into consideration the COVID-19 restrictions in each country; our plan was designed taking into consideration the pandemic context.
Our progress in 2021 related to involvement in our local communities includes a series of educational, environmental and health projects as well as volunteering initiatives, therefore bringing our contribution to UN Sustainable Development Goals 4 and 8.
- Oilmen school – we continued our initiative in 2021, with 2 generations in dual education system, having 174 pupils distributed in 6 classes in three partner high schools: “Astra Pitești” Technical High School, “Grigore Cobălcescu” Technical High School of Moinești and “Voievodul Mircea” Technical High School of Târgoviște.
- Let’s click on Romania is a unique public-private partnership project, developed by a long-standing collaboration between private businesses, the Workshops Without Borders NGO, and 230 schools and local NGOs working in underserved areas. During the project’s implementation, 4,000 refurbished computers were donated to 110 public schools with the assistance of the NGO’s nine vulnerable employees and ten volunteers. By implementing this project, we saved over 576,000kg of CO2, which is equivalent to the CO2 absorbed by 29,262,600 trees in a single day. The ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic has posed a number of challenges to our society. OMV Petrom continued to assist in mitigating the social and economic effects of the pandemic by ensuring access to remote schooling. The project’s three main goals are to address education, the environment, and vulnerable people, and they are as follows:
- Reduce the digital gap and support fair education in Romania
- Reduce the impact on the environment, since all the electronic equipment donated to schools is diverted from waste disposal and reconditioned for reuse
- Ensure that the 9 vulnerable people enrolled in the socio-professional insertion program have a stable work environment.
- Romania plants for tomorrow – Two new projects were part of “Romania plants for tomorrow” program in 2021. Urban forests were created in Moinești, Urziceni and Buftea to improve the air quality, reduce noise and support biodiversity. The second project is the Educational Forest, in which pupils from several schools in Prahova County took field trips to Tinosu to learn about the forest ecosystem. In this second year of our “Romania plants for tomorrow” program, approx. 600,000 seedlings were planted on 125 hectares, in 41 locations from 18 counties. The afforestation was performed in two seasons, spring and autumn.
- România Eficientă is the largest private project of national interest dedicated to energy efficiency in buildings, which has entered this year the stage of school renovation to the latest energy efficiency standards. The program is a unique initiative in Romania, aimed to create a culture of energy efficiency in the real estate sector. In 2021, we started the renovation works at Elie Radu Energy Technological High School in Ploiesti, which is our energy efficiency pilot project that we want to use later as a standard for the renovation of buildings at nearly Zero Energy Building (nZeb) standard in Romania. The renovation is scheduled to be comissioned in 2022.
In these difficult times, with healthcare systems under the pressure of multiple challenges, we continued to support health projects. One of the most important health initiatives in 2021 was “Minutes of flight, for hours of life”; the project provides air transportation for patients, especially children, whose conditions cannot be treated in Romania.
OMV Petrom employees are encouraged to play an active part in sustainability initiatives, including by volunteering. OMV Petrom supports its employees’ volunteering activities, encourages them to find solutions for local communities’ development and needs, and rewards the most active colleagues. We continued the Volunteer Championship, our initiative that challenges our employees to propose social projects for our communities.
Over EUR 11 mn social investments in projects that covered 100% of local communities
Over 1,100 OMV Petrom volunteers
ARIR Gala – winner at the category “Best Sustainability Report”
PR Awards – excellence diploma for the 2020 Sustainability Report
CCIFR – award in the CSR category: Sustainable Development for the project Romania planting for tomorrow.
Our social investment increased from EUR 6 mil to over EUR 11 mil covering 95% of local communities.
Projects to be continued in 2022 include:
- Romania plants for tomorrow – the largest private planting campaign will continue.
- Oilmen School – the 3rd generation of pupils will graduate in 2022, and a 4th generation will commence the professional classes
- România Eficientă will continue with the renovation works at Liliesti Secondary School in Baicoi.
- “Minutes of flight, for hours of life” will provides air transportation for patients, especially children, whose conditions cannot be treated in Romania.
New initiative for Petrochemical School – Pilot project for the 1st generation in dual system: petrochemical operators’ qualification (3 years) with the aim of assuring higher quality and a sustainable pipeline of blue-collar workforce at Lazăr Edeleanu High School Ploiești.
New projects will be planned to be adopted based on the needs assessment results.