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Minister: Estonia uses oil shale in a primitive way

BC, Tallinn, 13.11.2013.Print version
Estonian environment minister Keit Pentus-Rosimannus said that Estonia uses oil shale in a primitive way, leaving a massive and dirty mark on the environment and thus oil shale mining should not be increased, LETA/Public Broadcasting reports.

Estonian state-owned energy company Eesti Energia manager Sandor Liive declared in September that if the European climate policy continues in the current way, the value of Estonian oil shale can be near zero in 30-40 years and thus the state will get the more value from it the faster it is used up.


Pentus-Rosimannus said that instead of criticising the European climate policy, oil shale should be used more wisely. "People in Estonia don't yet realise what climate changes man for our region," she said. "In reality, more reasonable and environment friendly use of oil shale is an issue of Estonia's own competitiveness," said the minister.


"So far, Estonian oil shale has been used primarily in a rather primitive way – by burning it in a furnace," said the minister, adding that the value of oil shale can in time increase when new knowledge is added and new technological solutions are developed to get more value from oil shale. She pointed out oil shale oil as one way that already exists.


Pentus-Rosimannus doesn't favour an increase of mining volume of oil shale although economy minister Juhan Parts has said that it should be considered.


"The restrictions come from the fact that mining oil shale and the oil shale industry leave an extremely massive and dirty footprint on our nature and the living environment of people," said Pentus-Rosimannus. "According to my evaluation, our nature is just not capable of taking a bigger burden than that now."

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