Uruguay renews through 2016 environmental authorization to Botnia-UPM pulp mill

Uruguay has renewed until 2016 an environmental authorization to the Botnia-UPM pulp mill, as reported by the Minister of Environment, Planning and Housing, Francisco Beltrame.

Beltrame recently signed a new Environmental Operational Authorization (AAO -in spanish) for the Finnish company, as the current due this year. The validity period is three years, as usual, according to a Uruguayan newspaper ”.

For this, the Government would require to Botnia-UPM monitor daily the amount of phosphorus treated and discharged, adapt their facilities to prevent rain from lime sludge drag and maintain the temperature of the Uruguay River below 30 degrees Celsius.

Beltrame explained that the Government has decided to renew the AAO because the pulp mill is meeting the requirements of the National Environmental Management (DINAMA-in spanish), or at least is doing everything possible to satisfy them.

The renewal of the AAO could return to confront the governments of Jose Mujica and Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner regarding the Botnia-UPM, since, according to a bilateral treaty, any decision on the Finnish company should be consensual.

The continuing debate over a paper mill on the border between the two countries near the cities of Gualeguaychú (Argentina) and Fray Bentos (Uruguay) is warmed after the Uruguayan Government granted a permit on September 27th to increase production by 10%.

Environmental groups argue that Argentine and Uruguayan governments do little to remedy the situation, accusing them of “inertia” and “lack of commitment”. They fear the loss of biodiversity, harmful effects to the health of people and damage to fish stocks, as well as tourism and other economic activities in the region.

Source | http://www.noticiasaliadas.org

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