Last Updated on Sunday, 5 February 2023, 21:41 by Denis Chabrol
The caution was issued through their lawyer, Jamaican Maylene C. Alleyne, after the environmental consultancy service, IMEX Inc; invited the public stakeholder engagement regarding radioactive source storage and calibration operations” on behalf of SGI on February 7, 2022.
“You are hereby advised that on December 16, 2022, the High Court delivered judgment in the Judicial Review case, which includes an injunction restraining SGI from continuing operations at the radioactive source storage and calibration facility at Houston until the company is in receipt of a lawfully issued permit pursuant to the provisions of the Environmental Protection Act, Cap 20:05;” the lawyer states in a letter to IMEX dated February 5.
Acting on behalf of residents Vanda Radzik, Danuta Radzik and Raphael Singh, Ms Alleyne noted that the notice does not indicate the purpose of the stakeholder engagement. The Radziks and Singh are also represented by Guyanese lawyer, Ronald Burch-Smith.
The EPA on December 24, 2022 had stated that it “acknowledges its error in this instance, and will adhere to the Honourable Court’s judgment” that requires the regulatory agency to give reasons for waiving the need for an Environmental Impact Assessment for SGI to set up the facility.
Justice Nareshwar Harnanan , in his decision issued on December 16, 2022 issued an injunction restraining SGI from continuing operations purportedly authorised by the EPA at the facility in issue as contained in an Environmental Permit dated in January 2022, unless and/or until in receipt of a lawfully issued permit pursuant to the provisions of the Environmental Protection Act, Cap. 20:05.
In that decision, the judge notes that the EPA violated the Environmental Protection Act and so the Court considers that the question of any unlawfulness of the EPA’s action, centres on whether the EPA provided any reasons in its notice. The Act states that the EPA is required to publish its decision, with reasons, in the daily newspaper where an application is made by a developer for an environmental permit.
The Judge directed the EPA to quash its decision on June 9, 2021 to award an environmental authorisation to SGI to to construct a radioactive substances and materials storage and calibration facility at Lot 1 Area X Houston Georgetown. Mr Harnanan highlighted that stated that the central contention of the Applicants is that the EPA failed to give reasons for waiving the requirement for an EIA in its published notice.
The court also declared that the EPAs decision to waive the requirement of an Environmental Impact Assessment with respect
to SGI’s application for environmental authorisation for the construction of the facility is in breach of the EPAs statutory
duty for failure to provide reasons for the waiver as mandated under section 11(2) of the Environmental Protection Act, Cap 20:05.