Biodiversity supports human and societal needs, including food and nutrition security, energy, development of medicines and pharmaceuticals, and freshwater, which together underpin good health. It also supports economic opportunities and leisure activities that contribute to our overall well-being. Biodiversity conservation provides substantial benefits, such as clean, consistent water flows, protection from floods and storms, and a stable climate. The loss of biodiversity is perilous, and its consequences are immediate. The ’s biodiversity strategy for 2030 is a comprehensive, ambitious, and long-term plan to protect nature and reverse the degradation of ecosystems. The strategy aims to put Europe’s biodiversity on a path to recovery by 2030 and contains specific actions and commitments.

Specific Policies and Commitments

The OMV Group’s Environmental Management Standard and Environmental and Social Impact Assessment Procedure state that all OMV activities must be conducted in such a way as to cause minimal disturbance to protected areas and to local flora and fauna.

Management and Due Diligence Processes

Risk Assessments

Observed or predicted direct and indirect impacts on biodiversity and ecosystem services () are described and analyzed in environmental impact assessments. BES screenings are carried out at all relevant sites to identify, as far as reasonably possible, the potential presence of nationally or globally threatened species, legally protected threatened or fragile ecosystems, and internationally recognized areas with sensitive biodiversity.

Biodiversity Management Plans

OMV has joined Ipieca’s Biodiversity Task Force, which is working on an update to the guide to developing biodiversity action plans. Based on that guide, OMV aims to develop Biodiversity Management Plans for all major operations.

Mitigation and Rehabilitation

In the event of significant observed or predicted impacts, we apply the mitigation hierarchy, and action planning gives priority to avoidance and minimization over the restora­tion and offsetting of the impact. Mitigation measures might include rerouting of pipelines, for example.

A showcase example of good practice in biodiversity management is the Berling development project (formerly Iris Hades) in offshore Norway. The aim was to avoid any damage to sensitive cold-water coral. Building on available know-how and technology, biodiversity screening and baseline studies were executed as part of the environmental impact assessment. The mitigation hierarchy was applied by selecting the well location, template location, and pipeline routing as far away as possible from any coral colonies. The best available technologies were utilized to minimize any impact on the environment.

In 2022, OMV Petrom continued the cleaning, remediation, and ecological reconstruction works for two former fuel terminals, having started in 2019 (for more information, see Waste). During this project, we performed periodic monitoring during and after site rehabilitation, as requested for each site by the environmental authorities. Examples of this monitoring include taking samples of soil/subsoil and checking the groundwater in each phase of the project (e.g., excavation, bioremediation). This is carried out on a quarterly basis for one year after our work is finalized.

Working with Third Parties

OMV works locally with NGOs and other third parties on restoration and rehabilitation projects. For example, in 2022, we supported the following biodiversity-related projects in New Zealand as part of our wider Corporate Social Responsibility portfolio. New Zealand has the highest number of threatened indigenous species in the world.1 Source: Environment Aotearoa 2019, Ministry for the Environment,

  • Partnership with Ngāti Koata and the Department of Conservation for the Moawhitu lake and wetland regeneration project
  • Partnership with the Rotokare Scenic Reserve Trust, creating a predator-free reserve in South Taranaki, thereby protecting the endemic hihi bird (stitchbird) in this reserve located just outside of New Plymouth
  • Partnership with the local hapū at Pohokura to restore and protect the wetlands on site

2022 Actions

  • We began working on a biodiversity framework for OMV. Considering both sector-specific and cross-sectoral guidance documents, we aim to minimize our impact on nature in existing operations, projects, and in our value chain.
  • We again took steps to prevent impacts on sensitive species and ecosystems. For instance, following its environmental impact assessment, the timing for drilling the Oswig exploration well in the North Sea was rescheduled to avoid disturbance to the sand eel during the spawning season. Similarly, in the Borealis Schwechat project, the construction works were timed to avoid any negative impact on the breeding skylark population.
  • In 2021, we began mapping all our sites in a formal and harmonized way to determine if any are located in or near protected areas. A first screening in 2022 revealed that this is the case. We will continue to refine the results of this screening and integrate the results into the development of our biodiversity framework.
  • We also continued to implement local biodiversity initiatives, such as our green areas project in Tunisia. Our production sites in Tunisia are in a dry and arid climate with hostile living conditions and a lack of recreation areas. The aim of the project was to plant indigenous trees and shrubs in the desert. In 2020, a project was started in Waha where 512 trees were planted. In 2021, this was expanded to Nawara, where 1,200 trees (mainly native palm trees) were planted in the first year. An irrigation system was installed to support the budding plants. The goal was to provide recreation areas to improve the well-being of personnel and visitors, and to promote forest creation. In the context of extending green zones and the Tunisian National Tree Day on November 13, 2022, around 430 indigenous trees were planted on the sites of the Waha and Nawara Central Processing Facilities. In addition, around 40 trees were planted on the site of the Nawara Gas Treatment Plant. The plan is to extend the tree planting activity in Waha in 2023.


We aim to develop a formal and comprehensive biodiversity and protected areas framework in the coming years. In 2023, OMV will also continue supporting local biodiversity initiatives such as the Ngāti Koata and the Department of Conservation for the Moawhitu lake and wetland regeneration project, and the partnership with the Rotokare Scenic Reserve Trust in New Zealand.

1 Source: Environment Aotearoa 2019, Ministry for the Environment,

European Union
biodiversity and ecosystem services