Latvia, Lithuania And Estonia Wlll Sign Declaration Renouncing BelNPP Energy

Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia will sign a declaration of intent not to purchase electrical energy generated by BelNPP.

The heads of government of the Baltic countries reached the agreement in Tallinn on Friday, 7 February, the press service of the government of Lithuania reports.

The Baltic Prime Ministers. Photo: http://lrv.lt/

The prime ministers agreed to task their energy ministers to sign a declaration of intent on measures to ensure that no electricity from unsafe Astravyets NPP be bought from the moment the NPP is launched into operation.

“We are pleased to be moving closer to the common position of the Baltic States not to buy electricity from the unsafe Astravyets NPP,” said Lithuanian Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis.

He also noted that Lithuania, together with Latvia, Estonia and the European Commission, will find a solution “as to an appropriate mechanism controlling the origin of electricity entering our networks from third countries”.

BelNPP controversy

The Belarusian nuclear power plant is a multi-reactor nuclear power plant project in the Astravyets District, Grodno Region. The project foresees construction of two nuclear reactors between 2016 and 2020, and probably two more reactors by 2025.

The first reactor is scheduled for commissioning in December 2019, with the second one to go online in July 2020. Lithuania is a strong critic of BelNPP – the station is in 50km from Vilnius and less than 30 km from Lithuanian border.

Vilnius is convinced that the NPP construction is carried out without complying with safety requirements and environmental standards. Belarus rejects these claims.

In 2017, the Lithuanian Seimas passed a law recognizing the NPP under construction in Belarus as unsafe and posing a threat to Lithuania’s national security, environment and public health.

In 2019, the four-day nationwide drills started in Lithuania and involved a Chernobyl-like scenario where a nuclear accident at BelNPP sends out a radioactive cloud.

Despite numerous concerns, the BelNPP reportedly passed safety tests in compliance with the EU standards and its first power unit is planned to be set into operation at 2019 year-end.