The Academy of Sciences Energy Council says that the planned environmental charges hike for the oil shale industry is short-sighted and must be reconsidered.
"There will be less investments, the oil shale industry will be less competitive and more dependent, and the electricity production deficit will increase in this region as a direct result of the hike," the council stated in its report (in Estonian).
The council sided with the oil shale industry - which recently launched a campaign to stop the charges hike - saying that the tax system should take into account the prices of gas and electricity in the world market. By so doing it will share with the producers both the profits and losses brought by increases and decreases in prices.
The council also said that the influence of the tax increase has not been sufficiently analyzed.
"Although the Ministry of the Environment has decided to prolong the environmental charges period to 10 years, the repercussions of such a period have not been assessed," the report said.
The Energy Council has sent its conclusions to the government, the Ministry of the Environment, the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communication and the Ministry of Finance.