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On February 24, 2022, the russian federation forcefully entered Ukraine and unleashed the large-scale war accompanied by the destruction and occupation of critical infrastructure facilities, including renewables. As of May 3, 2022, the UWEA became aware of the destruction of at least 5 wind turbines, certain damages to a substations and power lines, robbery of staff buildings, and fusillade of work vehicles. Since the early hostilities, 1,262.5 MW or 80% of Ukraine's wind power capacities were stopped, most of which are llocated either at the heart of hostilities or in partial or complete occupation in southern Ukraine. As long as Ukraine continues to fight for energy independence, the full extent of russia's damage to Ukrainian wind power producers remains unknown. Nevertheless, the issue of compensation for damages and payment of relevant war reparations by the aggressor is on the agenda of the wind energy market.
On May 6, 2022, the UWEA combined expert efforts of its law firms and hosted the webinar on fixing and compensating for damage to RES facilities caused by the war. During the webinar, the representatives of Asters, Dentons and Sayenko Kharenko explained the peculiarities of the Ukrainian legislation regulating the issue of damages.
“This is a very important webinar for the entire RES market, as it must use all the opportunities available for obtaining compensation, despite the variety of procedures and their duration. So, today we brought together experts from three law firms, members of the UWEA, who will explain the compensation-related procedures and recommend how to go through this process as quickly and efficiently as possible,” opened the webinar Andriy Konechenkov, Chairman of the UWEA Board.
In her presentation “Types of damages stipulated by the Ukrainian law, which can be claimed for compensation. Algorithm of actions for real estate and environmental crimes”, Anzhelika Livitska, Head of the practice of construction, environmental protection and sustainable development at Asters, drew attention to the following novelty in Ukrainian legislation: “Businesses can seek compensation not only for direct losses, but also for lost profits, and this is completely new to our legislation”. Speaking about the fixing and compensating environmental crimes, Mrs. Anzhelika pointed out that “in order to avoid accusations of contamination of the lands where the facility is located, you need to notify the Ministry of Environmental Protection about the contamination (pollution) received as a result of hostilities. I emphasize that Ukrainian law provides for the presumption of guilt of land users.”
Maksym Sysoyev, Partner of law firm Dentons, talked about “Some features of fixing and documenting damage / destruction of real estate of the power plants due to the war”. “Ukrainian legislation contains a number of Resolutions that regulate the procedure for determining the damages caused to RES facilities during the war. At the same time, today we expect the adoption of Methods for determining and assessing damages to such facilities”, Mr. Sysoyev informed.
In turn, Oleksiy Koltok, Sayenko Kharenko's litigation counsellor, focused on the possibilities and precedents of applying to the European Court of Human Rights for recovery of damages: “unfortunately, currently there are no effective mechanisms in Ukraine to protect victims of russian military aggression. Therefore, the ECHR is the international judicial body that can consider an application from both individuals and legal entities and award fair satisfaction.”
Recording of the webinar: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mWLWLBtP2EQ