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Narva-Jõesuu issues new building permit for oil plant – construction resumes

Enefit 280 and Enefit 280-2.
Enefit 280 and Enefit 280-2. Source: Dmitri Fedotkin/ERR

The Narva-Jõesuu municipality granted Enefit Power new building permits for their shale oil plant, allowing construction to begin next week. The Supreme Court revoked the previous building permit in October owing to a shortcoming in the environmental impact assessment. The mayor said the company has corrected all the flaws.

"We have decided at today's City Council meeting that the City Council has all the necessary conditions for issuing new building permits. The environmental impact assessment (EIA) report approved by the Environmental Board arrived this afternoon, on the basis of which we have issued these permits," Narva-Jõesuu Mayor Maksim Ilyin said.

For Enefit Power, this means that it has permission to proceed with the construction, Ilyin said.

"Based on the Supreme Court's decision in October, they had a deadline of December 12, which is next Tuesday, to complete all construction activities. Since the Narva-Jõesuu City Council issued new building permits today, December 8, Enefit can proceed with the construction of the shale oil plant," he said.

Iljin said that the shortcomings cited by the Supreme Court when it revoked the construction permit had been corrected.

"I believe that there is nothing left in the building permits that a third party would be able to call attention to or challenge again," he said.

Iljin said that the construction can resume early next week.

On October 11 this year, the Supreme Court annulled the building permit granted to Enefit Power for the construction of an oil refinery, on the grounds that the permit had been issued with errors in the environmental impact assessment.

The appeal to annul the building permit was filed in April 2020 by the environmental organization MTÜ Loodusvõlu at the Tartu Administrative Court, claiming that the building permit violates international climate agreements and that the impact of the building permit has not been properly assessed.

The Supreme Court gave Enefit Power two months to conserve the plant's construction works, which would expire on December 12.

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Editor: Barbara Oja, Kristina Kersa

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