Czech Republic ready to withdraw legal action against Poland under certain conditions – EURACTIV.com
Coal mining at the Turów coal mine can continue, but Poland must pay Czechia EUR 40-50 million in compensation and review the licensing processes under which the Polish authorities extended the operating license.
These are the key points of the Czech proposal for an intergovernmental agreement which could lead to the withdrawal of the lawsuit brought by the Czech Republic against Poland over mining activities in Turów, a coal area located near the Czech-Polish borders.
The Czech government approved the framework of the deal on Monday.
In May, the European Court of Justice ruled that Poland should stop its mining activities because it negatively affects the water resources of neighboring Czechia. However, state-owned PGE Mining and Conventional Energy, which controls the mine and power plant, said it could not agree to suspend work on the mine, stressing that it would force the import of coal.
Since the decision of the European Court, however, intense negotiations between the Czech Republic and Poland have taken place with a view to resolving the dispute.
To withdraw the lawsuit, the Czech Republic will demand “a review of the existing authorization processes in accordance with European law and the provision of all available information on the impacts of mining,” said the Czech Minister of Environment, Richard Brabec. The Czech Republic also wants reimbursement of expenses for the construction of drinking water sources on the Czech side of the border – the estimated cost of which would amount to 40-50 million euros.
The Czech Republic sued Poland over the coal mining from Turów in February 2021. Although the mine was initially scheduled to close in 2020, it was subsequently allowed to operate until 2044 despite opposition from the Czech side.
While Poland has announced that it will not comply with the European Court’s ruling which calls for the immediate suspension of mining activities, the Czech Republic has said it will ask the European Court to impose a daily fine of 5 million euros to Poland. (Aneta Zachová | EURACTIV.cz, Joanna Jakubowska | EURACTIV.pl)