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Avocado company to appeal measures to reduce environmental impact

Published on October 22, 2021

The company Frutineves, which grows avocados in Lagos, will appeal in court to annul the measures imposed by the Algarve’s Regional Coordination and Development Commission (CCDR) to reduce the impacts caused by the project.

The announcement was made, in a statement, by CCDR/Algarve, which indicated that it had been informed by the representative of the company Frutineves “of the intention to file an administrative action with a view to the annulment of the decision handed down on August 31st”, following the issuance of the Declaration of Environmental Impact (DIA) which was unfavourable to the project.
 
According to CCDR/Algarve, the company was notified on 15th September of the measures defined and “necessary to reduce or compensate for the impacts caused by the project”, in the municipality of Lagos.  
The measures are related to water resources, biodiversity, archaeological and architectural heritage, the document reads.
 
CCDR/Algarve said that the company has a period of two months, ending on November 15th 2021, to present the project with the implementation of the imposed measures, so that it is within the legal guidelines of the agricultural project.
 
The avocado exploration project in the municipality of Lagos led the Association for the Protection and Regeneration of Ecosystems (Regenerarte) to take urgent legal action at the beginning of the month against the Ministries of Territorial Cohesion and the Environment. 
In a statement, Regenerarte said that the action was aimed at defending water resources and halting that agricultural project, following up on the unfavourable Environmental Impact Statement (DIA).
 
“The action, which is subpoena for the defense of rights, freedoms and guarantees, with the possibility of being converted into an injunction, runs under organic unit 1 of the Administrative and Fiscal Court of Loulé (…) having been brought against the Ministry of Territorial Cohesion, the Ministry of Environment and Climate Action and the Portuguese Environment Agency (APA), and having as counterparts the companies Frutineves, Lda. and Citago – Produção agricultural”, reads in the statement.
 
According to environmentalists, since the environmental ‘lead’, in April, to the project by the Frutineves company, “no changes are yet to be seen, with the exploration being maintained in normal operation with the consequent consumption of essential public water resources, far beyond permitted and licensed, and with the knowledge of the responsible authorities”.
 
In May, the exploration in question – which occupies 128 hectares in the parishes of Espiche and Barão de São João – was the subject of an administrative offense filed by the General Inspectorate of Agriculture, Sea, Environment and Spatial Planning (IGAMAOT) , following the CCDR/Algarve Unfavorable Environmental Impact Statement.