The Romanian environmental authorities show lack of interest for the annulment of the Certej permit.

In July 2012, The Regional Environment Protection Agency in Timișoara released the environmental permit for the cyanide mining project in Certej, Hunedoara. Its details – devastating impact on the environment, legal faults, network of shareholders and owning companies – make the Certej project alike the one proposed for Roșia Montană, drawing heavy criticism from Romanian environmental protection organizations.
The Ministry of Environment reacted with a two month delay, and only following requests from the civil society. Shortly after, the environment minister Rovana Plumb, declared that ”the environment permit for Certej was released without respecting the legal procedures. We are talking about an illegal and irresponsible agreement” . The National Environment Protection Agency, subordinate to the Ministry of Environment, submitted a request for the anullment or the environmental agreement for the Certej mining proiect, at the Bucharest Court of Appeal. The Independent Centre for the Development of Environmental Resources intervened as a party in this case.

At the first hearing, the Bucharest Court of Appeal declined having the competence to rule on the case, and sent it to the Bucharest Tribunal. At the next hearing, scheduled for the 1st of October 2013, thus, approximately one year after the first hearing, the National Environment Protection Agency asked for another re-schedule, to better prepare itself for the subject. The plaintiff’s low interest for the case and poor preparation for supporting the arguments in the brief can be clearly seen.

At the same time, the defender chosen by Deva Gold SA in the current trial is the Nestor Nestor Diculescu Kingston Petersen law firm. The delegated barrister is Mrs. Ana Diculescu-Șova, mother of the Minister Delegate for infrastructure projects of national interest and foreign investments, Mr. Dan Șova. The latter, as a member of Government, worked on the ”National plan for Strategic Investiment and Job Creation”, which was presented to the public in July of this year. The mining project proposed by Deva Gold SA at Certej is among the projects presented in this plan.

Following environment minister Rovana Plumb’s plea for cyanide mining in Roșia Montană, the ministry’s participation in this trial seems to be a simple act of feigning interest. It is as if the Environment Ministry would have Deva Gold spill 26.488 tons of cyanide directly into the Mureș River and then taking the estimated profits directly from the accounts of the Romanian National Bank. This might indeed be the cheaper option for Romania, as it might also be cheaper to pay the Șova clan the amounts that will result from their participation in the judicial representation for the mining companies, on the one hand, and the government lobby on the other” said Tudor Brădățan, member of Mining Watch Romania.

More information about Certej can be consulted here:
http://www.rosiamontana.org/sites/default/files/stiri/Factsheet%20Certej_ENG.pdf

For additional information: Tudor Brădățan, Phone: +40745370524, office@centrumediu.ro

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The Mining Watch Romania network unites the efforts of the civil society and the local monitoring, planning and intervention communities with regards to mining activities in Romania. The network secretariat is being provided by the Independent Centre for the Development of Environmental Resources.

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