"Terrafame is not going to compensate Talvivaara's destruction"
Terrafame, currently running the Talvivaara mine, should not take part in any legal proceedings, says the Finnish Minister of Economic Affairs.
The state does not intend to oblige Terrafame Oy, which currently runs the Talvivaara mine, to compensate landowners for the environmental damage caused by Talvivaara, says Mika Lintilä, Minister of Economic Affairs, to magazine Keskisuomalainen.
Terrafame, owned by the state with a 71 per cent stake, acquired the Talvivaara mine after Talvivaara Sotkamo Oy, which had previously operated mining, went bankrupt.
At the Kainuu District Court, there are currently about one hundred claims against Talvivaara Sotkamo Oy's bankruptcy estate. As part of Talvivaara, mining operations caused extensive environmental damage to the nearby lakes.
For example, Hannele Pokka, Permanent Secretary of the Finnish Ministry of the Environment, has proposed that Terrafame should assume responsibility for the damage caused by Talvivaara. The same view is given by Tapio Määttä, Professor of Environmental Law, who was interviewed last week by Uutissuomalainen.
- The state has pumped hundreds of millions of euros into the company. There is a special legal chatter if it doesn't pay. It's probably a few hundred or thousands of euros per property, Määttä said.
According to Lintilä, Terrafame has no reason to participate in the trial.
- The legal process concerns Talvivaara. It would be a strange procedure that Terrafame would go into that process, Lintilä says.
However, Lintilä reassures landowners that the damage will be compensated by the Environmental Insurance Center if the bankruptcy estate is unable to pay any compensation.
- The state is through it. The victims are not left without compensation, ”Lintilä says.
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