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EU: Bastroe canal is illegal

de Radu Rizea
Vineri, 7 martie 2008, 10:43 English | Top News

The European Union considers that Ukraine has broken the international agreements' conditions when it put up the environment impact study of the construction of the Bastroe canal, Romanian Environment minister Attila Korodi, declared for Romania has the voluntary support of Hungary, Estonia and France, as well as the support of the European Commissioner for Environment, Stavros Dimas, in all its necessary steps in solving the problem.

"I decided to intervene in the day's agenda and bring up the problem of the Bastroe canal and the breaking of the Espoo convention by Ukraine, demanding the European Union to intervene through diplomatic channels", Korodi said.

Hungary expressed its support, Estonia added that, in this case, the position of a third party towards the environmental impact in a EU state is not fair, while France also expressed its support, showing that the Danube Delta is priceless for the EU and it is obvious that Ukraine breaks the Espoo convention.

The Environment Commissioner, Stavros Dimas, said that he agrees with Romania's position, admitting that Ukraine unacceptably breaks the Espoo convention and said that he will address a letter to Kiev, demanding some answers.

Romania brought up the subject after Ukraine officially informed authorities in Bucharest authorities that the works at the Bastroe canal will continue. Kiev claims that the works do nothing but rebuild a canal that existed and was functional until 1950.

In spite of Romania's claiming that the works lead to the degradation of the Danube Delta ecosystem, Ukraine says the works are fundamental for improving the social and economic life of the region.

Under the Espoo Convention, Ukraine has the adopt a final decision on the Bastroe Canal project only after several stages of negotiation with the states affected by the works. Ukraine promised not to open the second stage of the works until the environment impact report is not ready. 

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