22 Jul 2022 12:50

Fisheries Agency, Nornickel subsidiary sign settlement agreement on petroleum product spill

KRASNOYARSK. July 22 (Interfax) - The Krasnoyarsk Territory Arbitration Court on Friday approved a settlement agreement between the Russian Federal Fisheries Agency (Rosrybolovstvo) and JSC Norilsk-Taimyr Energy Company (JSC NTEC), a Nornickel subsidiary, on environmental damages caused by a petroleum product spill at the Norilsk combined heat-and-power plant (CHPP).

"The settlement agreement on the case regarding JSC Norilsk-Taimyr Energy Company's compensation for damages caused to marine biological resources, which resulted from a petroleum product spill, and was brought by a claim from the Yenisei regional division of the Federal Fisheries Agency, has been approved by the Arbitration Court of the Krasnoyarsk Territory," the court told reporters.

As previously reported, Rosrybolovstvo filed a claim of 58.65 billion rubles against JSC NTEC at the end of July 2021 regarding compensation for damages caused to aquatic biological resources resulting from the leakage of petroleum products owing to the accident at the Norilsk CHPP-3 in May 2020. The plaintiff increased the claim by 311 million rubles to 58.961 billion rubles in April 2022.

The parties declared that they were prepared to sign a settlement agreement during the first court hearing in the case, and they presented the agreement in May.

Norilsk Nickel previously reported on negotiations regarding the terms and conditions of the joint development, the procedure for coordination and approval, as well as the plan for restoring the aquatic biological resources of the Norilo-Pyasinsky lake-and-river system.

In turn, Rosrybolovstvo insisted on the validity of its calculations on the damages caused after having confirmed the possibility of concluding a settlement agreement. The agency also noted the need for the company to implement a program to restore aquatic biological resources, including the construction of fish hatcheries.

At the end of May 2020, 21,163 tonnes of petroleum products spilled onto the soil and into the Ambarnaya River and its tributary, Daldykan, which flow into the large Lake Pyasino, resulting from the settling of a concrete platform and the breakdown of the reservoir at JSC NTEC's CHPP-3.

The Federal Natural Resource Use Oversight Service (Rosprirodnadzor) estimated the damages from the accident at around 148 billion rubles, with the court ruling damages at 146 billion rubles. Nornickel repaid the full amount without contesting the decision of the court of the first instance.