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ESIA's submission of 10 September 2013

10 September 2013

TAP (Trans-Adriatic Pipeline) submits its updated Environmental & Social Impact Assessment to the Italian Ministry of Environment and Territory and Sea Safeguard

• The updated ESIA is the result of the ongoing dialogue with administrative authorities, local communities, and answers their concerns 

• TAP uses cutting-edge technologies and methods to protect people and environment

• TAP, in agreement with the territory, will invest in local projects of social and environmental significance, to benefit Municipalities, inhabitants and local community
Today TAP submitted the Environmental and Social Impact Assessment update, a document that allows starting the EIA procedure, opened in March 2012, among the involved authorities

Lecce, 10.09.2013 - TAP, in addition to what’s required by the current Italian law, conforms to the international standards set by EBRD – European Bank for Reconstruction and Development – and IFC – International Finance Corporation, which also dictate an evaluation on the social component. Therefore, the submitted documentation identifies and analyzes every impact, risk and opportunity linked to the project, considering its effects on the environment and on the socio-cultural elements, and foreseeing how to manage them. When selecting the alternative routes for the pipeline, TAP met local communities, administrative authorities and other stakeholders, to receive comments and to answer to any possible concern. This debate is still ongoing, and will continue in the next months.

The ESIA update, submitted to the Ministry of Environment and Territory and Sea Safeguard and all involved authorities on 2013 September 10th, fully replaces the document submitted on 2012 March 15th. The new TAP project acknowledges the comments received during the debate with the territory and the institutions, and therefore presents the consequential planning modifications. It describes TAP’s updated configuration in Italy, analyzes the pipeline’s potential impact on the environment and on the socio-cultural resources, underlines the positive impacts and suggests specific actions to avoid or soften any possible negative impact.

Among the main modification to the project:

- The moving of the landing spot in San Foca, between San Basilio and Chicalinda beaches. The impact on the seashore will be avoided using an approx. 1500 meters long microtunnel running 10 meters underground; this will prevent the pipeline from damaging Posidonia seagrass’ protected environment and, in the meanwhile, will avoid the visual impact and any disturbance to the seashore and the  Mediterranean maquis.

 - Reducing the size and optimizing the location of the Receiving Terminal (PRT) in Melendugno Municipality, to an overall footprint of 12 hectars, of which only 3500 mq occupied by buildings.

- A significant reduction of the terminal’s CO2 emissions, thanks to the use of electric boilers. This will allow to bring CO2 emission, in the worst scenarios, to the 0,6% of Melendugno Municipality’s emissions, according to Apulia Region official data. About it, TAP underlines that the electric boilers working with natural gas will function, in a year, for no more that 2% of the total operating time of the PRT (160h).

- The reduction of the quantity and dimension of the PRT buildings, in order to adhere to the typical local buildings (manor farms, farmhouses, etc), therefore minimizing the terminal’s visual impact.

Giampaolo Russo, TAP Italian Country Manager, stated: “TAP has carried out a huge amount of work to ensure the building of a project that could be fully safe, technically grounded and respectful of Apulian environment and territory. For three years we analyzed the Brindisi area and four macro-routes, but those options weren’t able to give a technically suitable and environmentally safe landing spot. Then, through in-depth researches, we identified the best route and the most suitable landing spot, in full respect of the territory, in Melendugno Municipality. The new documentation takes into account every remark we received, as well as the comments we heard during the meetings with citizens and local institutions”. 
The documentation presented, as required by the law, has been submitted and it’s available for consultation at the Ministry of Environment, the Ministry of Tourism, Apulia Region, Lecce Province and Melendugno Municipality; it’s also available on Ministry of Environment website (www.va.minambiente.it) and TAP website (www.tap-ag.com).

As required by the law, everyone who’s interested can, within 60 days of notice of publication, examine the project and the ESIA, and submit his own written remarks, also giving additional cognitive and evaluative elements, sending them to the Ministry of Environment. The information can be also sent through certified e-mail at DGSalvaguardia.Ambientale@PEC.minambiente.it.