Ukraine’s special body on implementation of the Espoo Convention on Environmental Impact Assessment in a Transboundary Context held a meeting in mid-December last year.  Several decisions were reached to take practical steps in implementing Espoo Convention in Ukraine, in particular in transport and energy sectors.

In energy sector, the decision was taken to start transboundary impact assessment procedure regarding nuclear safety reassessment and plant site for Rivne nuclear power plant reactors 1 and 2 (deadline January 2018), plant sites of South Ukrainian and Zaporizhska nuclear power plants (deadline February 2017). In addition, the meeting decided to continue transboundary consultations regarding construction of the 3rd and 4th nuclear reactors at Khmelnytska nuclear power plant (deadline April 2017). 

The meeting also discussed the Danube-Black Sea project. The Government is planning to deal with Romanian disagreements bilaterally. Meanwhile, Romania will be notified of the fact that the canal is included into map of Ukraine’s internal waterways (after adoption of the law on internal water transport). No decision was taken as to transboundary impact assessment of this project.

These decisions likely mean preparations for the upcoming session of the Meeting of the Parties to the Espoo Convention (June 2017). Ukraine’s is supposed to show progress in fixing the violations of its obligations, in particular regarding Danube-Black Sea canal construction and life-time extension of the two reactors at Rivne nuclear power plant.