“It has never been and is not our intention to delay or block this investment,” says Marshal (~ governor – ed.) of the Pomeranian Voivodeship Mirosław Struk in an interview with Pomorskie.eu. However, he also raises objections to the environmental decision, warning against the project being delayed due to faulty procedures, as was the case with the abandoned project in Żarnowiec.
The Marshal’s office in Pomerania organized a debate with the supporters and opponents of nuclear energy, in which there appeared, among other things, voices that called for repeating the environmental decision process on the Lubiatowo-Kopalino location prepared by Polskie Elektrownie Jądrowe (PEJ), Bechtel and Westinghouse.
“I believe that in civil society we have the right to a substantive, public and open discussion on key issues of wider interest. Moreover, I believe that citizens, in particular those directly interested, and these undoubtedly include residents living near the planned power plant, have the right to expect answers to their doubts and concerns,” the Marshal told Pomorskie.eu.
The Marshal recalled his doubts regarding the environmental decision. “There is no consensus among experts on the actual extent of the impact of the future nuclear power plant on the sea. The opinions of scientists from two different scientific centers of the Polish Academy of Sciences are contradictory on this issue,” Struk explained. “That is why we suggested to the Director-General of Environmental Protection that, within the framework of his powers, he impose on the company building the power plant the obligation to carry out a third, independent modeling. To be sure and to close this discussion. At the stage of issuing the environmental decision, the General Director of Environmental Protection did not agree to this proposal, but we hope, as I mentioned earlier, that the topic will return when the environmental impact assessment is reassessed,” he said.
An environmental impact assessment is one of the steps necessary before a final investment decision on a nuclear power plant is made. “We also had numerous comments on the environmental report. The Management Board of the Pomeranian Voivodeship handed them over to the General Director of Environmental Protection. I believe that on the occasion of a re-evaluation of the environmental impact of the power plant – because such a decision of the general director must be made – there will be an opportunity to dispel doubts that have not yet been clarified,” the Marshal stated during the interview.
“I believe that it is necessary to dispel all fears now, so that in a few years we do not face the risk of challenging any of the decisions and permits. The local government of the province is not a party to these proceedings, but there are communities that have the right to go to court. The worst-case scenario we can imagine is Żarnowiec 2.0, i.e. the construction of the nuclear power plant will start, but then, after a few years, it will be terminated, whether as a result of court decisions or social protests. I think nobody wants this,” he warned.
It is worth recalling that the Baltic SOS organization organized protests against the atom in Pomerania and expressed its opinion on the environmental decision. Applications to repeat the environmental decision in accordance with the right to appeal have been submitted, about which we wrote on BiznesAlert.pl. The nuclear power plant project in Żarnowiec, initiated during the communist era, was canceled after the political system in Poland changed. It was accompanied by social protests and economic problems of the country, despite that fact that the project was at an advanced stage. The reactor that was supposed to have been used in Poland was installed at a nuclear power plant in Finland.
“I would also like to remind you that together with 25 local governments from the districts of Puck, Lębork and Wejherowo we have also created a list of investments that we consider necessary to complement the construction of the power plant itself. I believe that the government and the investor will recognize the concerns of residents and the needs of local governments, including those related to the strengthening of road infrastructure, health care and other services. It will cost us money that many communities cannot afford. Thanks to our persistence, there was a proposal for financial support, but we have to negotiate the proposed amounts,” the Marshal stated.
The topic of the nuclear power plant in Pomerania may play an important role in the 2024 local elections.
Pomorskie.eu/ Wojciech Jakóbik