Transboundary Environmental Impact Assessment Public Consultation: Transboundary Environmental Public Consultation - Decision on the extension of the operational life of the Doel 1 & 2 Nuclear Power Plants, located near the Port of Antwerp, Belgium

Closed 23 Jun 2021

Opened 28 Apr 2021

Overview

Transboundary Environmental Public Consultation - Decision on the extension of the operational life of the Doel 1 & 2 Nuclear Power Plants, located near the Port of Antwerp, Belgium

Why we are consulting

Why is this consultation being undertaken?

In accordance with the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe Convention on Environmental Impact Assessment in a Transboundary Context (the Espoo Convention) and Convention on Access to Information, Public Participation in Decision-making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters (the Aarhus Convention), the Minister for Housing,Local Government and Heritage received notificati on from the Belgian Minister for Energy, Environment and Sustainable Development, of the intended extension of the operational life of the Doel 1 & 2 nuclear power plants (NPPs) and the associated nuclear safety-related improvement works, inviting Ireland to participate in transboundary public consultation.


Doel 1 & 2 are two of Belgium’s seven nuclear power plants, and both have been in operation since 1975. In 2003, the Belgian Government passed a law stipulating that all nuclear power plants would be decommissioned 40 years after their industrial commissioning, meaning that Doel 1 & 2 were scheduled to cease operations in 2015. A subsequent law was passed in 2015 that extended the operational life of Doel 1 & 2 by 10 years, from 2015 to 2025.

A ruling in the Court of Justice of the European Union determined that the decision by Belgian authorities to extend the operational life of
the NPPs constituted a ‘project’ within the meaning of the EIA Directive (Directive 2011/92/EU), thus requiring that anenvironmental impact assessment take place, along with the associated transboundary consultation.


For practical reasons, Belgian authorities decided to prepare two separate Environmental Impact Reports (EIRs), but have advised that they will need to be evaluated in conjunction. One report relates solely to the decision to extend the operational life of Doel 1 & 2. The second report concerns the nuclear safety-related improvement works which includes the construction of three new buildings on the site:


• Two buildings for hosting the Containment Filtered Venting System of the nuclear plant;
• One building housing the new fi re exti nguisher pump station.


The Environmental Protecti on Agency (EPA), as the appropriate body in Ireland with expertise on radiation policy, advised that Ireland should accept the invitation from Belgium to participate in the transboundary consultation because although Ireland is outside the 300km range set by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in its Ingestion and Commodities Planning Distance (ICPD) modelling, Ireland is within the 1,000km range set as Zone 1 for emergency response purposesby the IAEA. Zone 1 States are considered more likely to be aff ected and so direct liaison is established with these States by the IAEA in the event of an emergency. A member of the public may make a writt en submission or observati on in relati on to the potenti al transboundary environmental effects of the project, by sending them to their local planning authority, to be received by close of business on Wednesday 23 June 2021 at the latest. Submissions or observations should not be made to the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage.

 

Making submissions or observations
Before lodging a submission, please see our privacy statement below. You will be required as part of your submission to accept the conditions outlined.

 

Processing of special categories of personal data

 

  • The legal basis for processing the personal data under Article 6(1)(c) and 6(1)(e) of the GDPR Regulation and 132(4) and 132(5) of the Planning and Development Regulations 2001, as amended.

  • Article 132(4) of the 2001 Regulations requires the local authorities to consult with the Minister, following the receipt of any submission or observations - this involves sending on a copy of the submissions/observations received, including any submission the authority wishes to make and a summary of those submissions/obs, as requested by the Belgian Planning Inspectorate

  • Article 132(5) of the 2001 Regulations requires each planning authority, following consultation with the Minister, to consult with Belgium – sending on a copy of the submissions/observations received, including any submission the authority wishes to make and a summary of those submissions/obs, as requested by the Belgian Planning Inspectorate.  

  • Dún Laoghaire Rathdown County Council will be sharing the submissions/obs and a summary of same with the Minister the submissions will also be sent on to the Belgian Planning Inspectorate. The Belgian Planning Inspectorate may publish your submission or a summary of same on its website.  

Areas

  • All Areas

Audiences

  • All residents

Interests

  • All Interests