In Ukraine the PAEU proposed to adapt the ATS procedure to martial law Shutterstock

In Ukraine the PAEU proposed to adapt the ATS procedure to martial law

Ekaterina Belousova

Under martial law, the actual implementation of environmental impact assessment is not possible

The Professional Association of Ecologists of Ukraine (PAEU) has asked the Government to provide a declarative principle with a mandatory post-war procedure for an opinion from the ATS.

These changes can be reflected both in the transitional provisions of the Law and by excluding the conclusion from the ATS from Annex 2 of the Cabinet of Ministers Resolution №314, reports EOBUSINESS

Lyudmyla Tsyganok, President of the PAEU, explained that the practice of passing the ATS for existing enterprises is in place, formed in compliance with the instructions of the State Coinspection.

“All risks are carefully weighed. We consider such a temporary decision justified, state and pro-Ukrainian," she added.

Ukrainian business needs fast and effective steps for economic development. In addition, Ukraine's European aspirations must be supported by real rules in the field of environmental protection. There must also be clear, state-guaranteed rules for attracting investment.

There is a European tool for environmental impact assessment for planned activities in peacetime - the ATS permitting procedure, which includes public participation. However, this is a peacetime procedure.

The conclusion from the ATS is a permit for 115 activities under Part 2 and Part 3 of Art. 3 of the Law of Ukraine "On Environmental Impact Assessment", in particular on their change, re-equipment, re-profiling, expansion, etc.

In critical conditions, violations of logistics chains, companies are forced to change raw materials, which affects the qualitative and quantitative volumes of waste generation, emissions of pollutants, and formally is the basis for the passage of ATS. At the same time, the types of planned activities specified in the Law are budget-generating, carried out by large business entities.

The passage of the ATS is delayed and lasts 4-6 months, which is unacceptable in wartime.

Also because of the war, for security reasons, public access to the Unified Register of ATS was closed, and the procedure should include publicity. In accordance with the requirements of the Law, all stages of the procedure are covered by informing the public both through the register and through the print media. Without access to the register, the element of publicity was not observed, which is the basis for revoking the conclusion of the ATS.

"That is, all the conclusions issued after the closure of the register and the initiated cases may be revoked in the future for formal reasons. Investments in this format are almost impossible and experts know it,” the article reads.

The actual impact assessment is not possible because:

  • access to registers, public cadastral map blocked (about 60 registers of public data are used to prepare the report);
  • Currently, it is forbidden to stay in forests (according to the Guidelines of the Ministry of Environment, the study area should cover a radius of 2 km from the planned activities, which almost always include plantations and forests), which makes it impossible to conduct biodiversity research;
  • any movement for the purpose of field research (sampling of soil, water, air) outside the settlement should be carried out in consultation with the Military Administration (in most cases, such approvals are not provided).

Businesses do not have the opportunity to prepare relevant reports.

"In fact, deregulation will apply to entities that do not require permits, do not affect the main budget revenues, are not employers for thousands of citizens. In turn, the subjects that have a real impact on the economy will be stuck waiting for opportunities to pass the ATS,” the PAEU explains.

We will remind, environmentalists called on the Ministry of Environment do not block the economy for the period of martial law.

As EcoPoliticа reported earlier, the Ministry of Environment settled the issue of ATS procedures, which began before February 24.

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