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International Internet Magazine. Baltic States news & analytics Friday, 05.06.2020, 12:42

Estonia may forgo environmental impact assessment in border construction

BC, Tallinn, 21.05.2020.Print version
The Estonian government is about to discuss on Thursday a proposal of the Interior Ministry for an environmental impact assessment to be not conducted for the construction of border infrastructure on the Estonian-Russian border, writes LETA/BNS.

The proposal of the Interior Ministry is to forgo environmental impact assessment in the construction of the infrastructure, including in the construction of access roads, on the Estonian side of the border in Southeast Estonia, spokespeople for the government said. 

To determine the need for the conduct of an environmental impact assessment, the Police and Border Guard Board commissioned a preliminary estimate of environmental impact, which found that unfavorable impact on Natura 2000 areas is excluded. 

A total of 141.2 hectares of forest still needs to be cut for the construction of infrastructure on the Estonian-Russian border.

The obligation to carry out an environmental impact assessment is set forth in the Environmental Impact Assessment and Environmental Management System Act, which says that an environmental impact assessment is mandatory for projects entailing a deforestation of forest land with a total area of over 100 hectares. At the same time, the law provides an exception in cases related to the ensuring of national security. 

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