In a new claim filed and dated March 11 through its attorney, Pazany Thandarayan, (Mauritius) CT Power Ltd – MCTP – has now decided to sue the Central Electricity Board (CEB) for the rejection by the Environmental Impact Assessment Committee of its proposal for a 110 megawatts power plant. A first claim filed last month was directed against the Minister and the Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development. According to the MCTP, “it was the CEB’s responsibility to secure the site for the realisation of the project”.
However, says the claim, the CEB’s failure to defend the interest of the MCTP constitute an “Event of Default” which the CEB will now have to correct.
According to the claim, despite a prior arrangement between both parties (CEB and MCTP) the EIA licence was rejected on the alleged basis of the “precautionary principle” that the site was not conducive for such a development, that the adverse impacts on the residential areas due to the inconveniences and disturbances associated with the traffic and the likely health impacts on the inhabitants of the locality and surrounding areas.
“You, the CEB, have all along warranted and represented to MCTP that the site of Montagne Jacquot/Albion had been specifically earmarked for the development of a coal-fired power plant…,” says the plaintiff.
And it is on that basis that it entered into the Power Purchase Agreement, the Interconnection Facilities Design and Build Agreement and the Coal Supply Agreement with the CEB for the power plant project.
The claim adds: “Under section 4.2.4 of the Power Purchase Agreement, you the CEB, during the predevelopment period, have the obligation, inter alia, to use reasonable endeavours to assist the MCTP in obtaining such consents as are necessary for the MCTP to perform its obligation.”
However, says the claim, the CEB’s failure to defend the interest of the MCTP constitute an “Event of Default”. In a prior claim, the MCTP maintained that the Minister of Environment and Sustainable Development has “acted frivolously and vexatiously” and his decision “is a colourable device” to prevent it from implementing its joint project with the CEB.
The statement of appeal also maintained that the minister had acted “arbitrarily” by failing to give any proper reasons and/or to provide any rationale for his decision in rejecting the EIA application.
Among the reasons given for ditching the plan are its proximity to residential areas, road traffic issues, socio-economic impact, noise pollution, its impact on fauna and flora, and pollution.
The site at Pointe aux Caves, situated between Albion and Pointe aux Sable, had been chosen by the consultant K& M Engineering of the United States in 2002 for the installation of a coal-fired plant as well as a jetty to unload coal.
This was studied by the EIA Committee. They concluded that when the document of CT Power Ltd was submitted, there was not much residential development at Pointe aux Caves.
The EIA Committee had noted that with the operation of this power plant, some 1,260 tonnes of coal per day would have to be transferred from the site during the week. Thus, trucks of 22 tonnes would have to make 115 trips (to and from the site).
La fourniture en électricité a été perturbée dans diverses régions de l’île ces derniers jours. Mardi 15 mars, 30 000 foyers ont été privés de courant. Si le CEB met en cause les chauves-souris, cette thèse est réfutée par un ancien directeur de l’organisme.
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6 years, 8 months ago
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7 years ago