The State Council of the Komi Republic has prepared an appeal to the State Duma and the Federation Council with a request to speed up the consideration of issues related to improving the environmental safety and compliance legislation. The deputies suggest limiting the working lifespan of oil pipelines, introducing a multiplier when calculating a compensation for damage caused to the environment, and increasing fines for oil spills.
The appeal (is at 7x7’s disposal) states that 60 accidents occurred at the oil industry enterprises of the Komi Republic between 2017 and 2020. Oil spilled over 125 hectares of land. Most accidents, according to the State Council of the Komi Republic, are associated with the loss of oil pipelines' piping integrity in Usinsk. The deputies recalled an accident which took place on the LUKOIL-Komi’s oil pipeline on May 11. About 100 tons of floating oil got into soil and the Kolva river then.
"A high pipeline breaks rate is also indicated across the whole Russian Federation. According to the data provided in the State Report on the State and Protection of the Environment in the Russian Federation in 2019, about 17 thousand accidents related to oil spills were registered," the Komi State Council’s deputies said.
In this regard, the top lawmaking body of the republic is going to file an appeal to the State Duma and the Federation Council with a request to consider issues connected with amendments to environmental safety and compliance federal laws as soon as possible. The deputies demand amending the Law on Industrial Safety of Hazardous Production Facilities, namely, limiting the working lifespan of oil pipelines. The legislators suggest extending the working lifespan of such facilities once for no more than 10 years if there is a modernization program.
Increasing a multiplier when calculating a compensation for damage caused to the environment, life and property of citizens and administrative fines for oil spills for legal entities are suggested.
In addition, the deputies of the Komi Republic suggest transferring payments for claims on compensation for damage caused to the environment to the budgets of a municipality where the accident was and creating budget environmental funds in each subject of the Russian Federation. They will be formed at the expense of environmental fines and payments. It is planned to use money from this fund for compensations for the damage caused, environment enhancement, and other nature protection measures.
The State Council’s deputies are going to consider the corresponding resolution at a session scheduled for June 24.
The regime of emergency was imposed in three districts of the Komi Republic — Usinsk, Izhma, and Ust-Tsilma — due to an accident at Oshsky Oil Field on the border with the Nenets Autonomous Okrug. The experts of the Save Pechora Committee did not believe the official oil leak rate and declared it underestimated, referring to their own calculations. The Komi Prosecutor's Office and the Criminal Investigations Directorate for Arkhangelsk Oblast and NAO initiated criminal cases on the fact of the oil spill.