KRASNOYARSK, February 5. / TASS /. Russia's Federal Service for Supervision of Natural Resources (Rosprirodnadzor) was satisfied with the decision of the Arbitration Court of the Krasnoyarsk Region, which partially upheld the service's claim against the Norilsk-Taimyr Energy Company (NTEK, a subsidiary of MMC Norilsk Nickel) and recovered 146 bln rubles ($1.9 bln) from the company for environmental damage caused by a fuel spill last year.
This is the first multibillion-dollar fine in the history of the country over environmental damage, the head of the service Svetlana Radionova told reporters on Friday. "We are happy, we won. Never in the history of the country has there been such a [fine for environmental damage]," she said.
According to Radionova, the service is ready that the company might appeal the court's ruling, but calls on NTEK to pay the prescribed fine. "We do not see the final decision. Most likely, the judge will provide the reasoning and we will look and formulate our position. We now have the resolutive part," she said.
Earlier, the Arbitration Court of the Krasnoyarsk Region accepted the claim filed by the Federal Service for Supervision of Natural Resources to sue NTEK for 148 billion rubles over a major oil spill at the Norilsk CHPP-3. On November 24, consideration of the case on the merits began. MMC Norilsk Nickel and the Ministry of Ecology and Rational Nature Management of the Krasnoyarsk Region acted as third parties in the case. On Friday, February 5, the court partially satisfied the claim and awarded a fine of 146.177 bln rubles.
At the end of May, one of the fuel tanks at CHPP-3, owned by Nornickel's subsidiary, collapsed due to subsidence of the storage supports. As a result, more than 20,000 tonnes of oil products were released from the reservoir. The Federal Service for Supervision of Natural Resources estimated the environmental damage at about 148 bln rubles. Nornickel did not agree with the calculations. According to the company's estimates, the damage is 21.4 bln rubles ($287 mln).