The Dispute between Poland and Czechia over the Turów Mine

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The Polish side received a proposal from the Czechs for the content of the disputed article on Turów. According to Aleksander Brzózka, Spokesman for the Ministry of Climate and the Environment, they are analyzing it and will discuss it with the Czech partners.

The Spokesman of the Ministry emphasized that he would not like to talk about the details of these solutions for now. “We agreed with the Czech government that at this stage of the discussion we want to talk directly and not through the media,” he added.

On Monday, Brzózka indicated that the Czech side is working on its proposal of the disputed article of the contract on the Turów mine.

Last Friday, after the resumption of talks with the Czech Republic on Turow in Prague, the Minister of Climate and Environment, Anna Moskwa, told journalists that the agreement still needs time to be concluded.

Last week’s meeting was the 18th round of the negotiations on Turów, which have been taking place since June this year. On September 30, the consultations were suspended after no agreement was reached on the duration of the intergovernmental agreement.

The Turów mine is owned by PGE Górnictwo i Energetyka Konwencjonalna, part of PGE Polska Grupa Energetyczna. In 2020, the Minister of Climate and Environment, Michał Kurtyka, extended the license for lignite mining in Turów for another six years, until 2026.

The Czech Republic brought a complaint to the Court of Justice of the EU (CJEU) against Poland regarding the Turów lignite mine in February this year. They also applied for an interim ordering the suspension of mining operations.

The complaint was connected to the expansion of the mine, which – as Prague claims – threatens the access to water of the inhabitants of the surrounding communes. They also complain about noise and dust from lignite mining.

In May, the CJEU, in response to a request from the Czech Republic, ordered the immediate suspension of coal mining in Turów. The Polish government announced that the mine would continue to operate and started discussions with the Czech. On September 20, the European Court decided that Poland had to pay the European Commission a fine of PLN 500,000 per day for not implementing interim measures and not stopping the extraction of lignite in the mine.

On Tuesday, a hearing was held in front of the CJEU in Luxembourg regarding the Czech Republic’s complaint regarding the activities of Turow. According to the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage, the sentence should be passed in the first quarter of 2022.

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