The state stopped geological surveys and the payment of financial compensation in 7 sites

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The state stopped geological surveys and the payment of financial compensation in 7 sites

Based on the comments from communities and associations, the Ministry of the Environment (MŽP) has decided not to extend the validity period of exploration permits for geological work by two years in relation to the siting process for a deep repository, as Radioactive Waste Repository Authority (SÚRAO/RAWRA) had demanded.

The reason was that the validity of exploration permits expired on December 31, 2016 and SÚRAO submitted its request for extension late. This means that from 1st January 2017 SÚRAO must not perform any previously accepted geological work in the sites. Together with stopping surveys, the payment of state financial contributions in sites has been terminated as well, although these were originally supposed to be paid to municipalities during the evaluation of survey results. On top of that, the court decision regarding legal actions of the 18 municipalities and 6 associations against the decision of the Minister of the Environment Brabec to issue a permit, which had expired at the end of 2016, is still pending.

The purpose of geological surveys was surface measurement and sampling without deep drilling. According to a press release by the Platform Against Deep Repository SÚRAO will not be able to credibly choose a site without the data by 2018, because this was claimed to municipalities by SÚRAO before the geological surveys had started. However, SÚRAO in its current press release of March 2, 2017 states that "negative statement of the MŽP (to extend the so-called "exploration permit for special intervention into the Earth's crust") has no effect on the course of evaluation of existing sites." The official statement of the spokesperson of March 2017 is that based on the existing data, SÚRAO is already able to assess which 4 sites will be chosen in 2018. You can learn more about the position of the Platform on the siting process for a deep geological repository in its first press release of October 2016. The Platform calls for the termination of all geological surveys (including reconnaissance work in sites of EDU-West and ETE-South near nuclear power plants, where work is being done without permission from the Ministry of the Environment), a nationwide discussion, the adoption of a new national programme on radioactive waste and spent fuel management, clearly defined criteria according to which the final site will be chosen, transparency of the process and legislative amendments, especially the adoption of the Act to strengthen the rights of municipalities. Compliance with these requirements will help build confidence between responsible state institutions and the Platform.

On Saturday, April 22, 2017, the nationwide Day Against Repository III. Is being held under the auspices of the Platform. As in 2015 and 2016 , local municipalities and associations will organize a series of public events in all seven sites in the Czech Republic.

Olga Kališová, Calla (March 17, 2017)


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