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English Section

Polish-Czech lignite mine dispute to be resolved soon: official

19.01.2022 18:00
Poland’s environment minister has said that progress has been made in talks with the Czech government to end a stalemate over a contentious Polish lignite mine.  
Polands Environment Minister Anna Moskwa (right) and her Czech counterpart Anna Hubkov (left) hold a joint news conference after talks in Warsaw on Tuesday, Jan. 18, 2022.
Poland’s Environment Minister Anna Moskwa (right) and her Czech counterpart Anna Hubáčková (left) hold a joint news conference after talks in Warsaw on Tuesday, Jan. 18, 2022.Photo: PAP/Leszek Szymański

Anna Moskwa made the comment after a meeting with her Czech counterpart Anna Hubáčková in Warsaw on Tuesday, telling reporters that a resolution was in sight.

“If the agreement is accepted and then successfully signed by our Czech partners, who are now to take the final decision, they will immediately send information to the court that the dispute has been resolved and withdraw their complaint,” Moskwa said.

The Polish government spokesman said last week that Warsaw was prepared to bear the cost of defending its Turów lignite mine after the European Commission urged Warsaw to pay its fines over the continued operation of the site.

The European Union's top court in September ruled that Poland must pay a EUR 500,000 daily fine to the European Commission, the EU’s executive arm, for defying an earlier order to halt operations at Turów, which is located near the border with the Czech Republic. 

Earlier last year, the Czech Republic filed for an injunction with the European Court of Justice, saying the Turów open-cast mine on the Polish-Czech border was draining groundwater away from surrounding areas and harming Czech citizens.

Elektrownia w Turowie The Turów power plant and open-pit brown coal mine in southwestern Poland. Photo: PAP/Maciej Kulczyński

Radio Poland's Michał Owczarek has the story.

Click on the audio player above to listen.