An Argentine-Uruguayan commission took 50 samples of effluent from the pulp mill off Fray Bentos and as many in the Gualeguaychú mouth of the river in Entre Rios. Botnia passes test. The reports from the samples collected on the Argetine side recorded more polluting than those found off Fray Bentos. The plant's formal name is Orion but is widely known for its original Finnish name Botnia.
A sea elephant has been sighted in the shores of Gualeguaychu, next to the River Uruguay, deep in the Argentine heartland province of Entre Ríos, which together with the opposite coast in neighboring Uruguay has suffered uncommon high floods that have left part of several cities covered in water.
The Uruguayan government announced it has renewed until 2016 Botnia/UPM pulp mill license so it can continue with production since it complies with the necessary environmental requisites and is committed to the additional standards demanded, said Housing and Environment minister Francisco Beltrame.
In a formal presentation Argentina summoned Uruguay ‘to leave without effect’ its latest controversial decision allowing the Botnia/UPM pulp plant to increase its annual production and accused Uruguay of ‘unilateral violation’ of the River Uruguay statute which rules over the neighbouring countries shared-border waterway.
The Argentine Foreign ministry denied on Friday it had given a two-day ultimatum to Uruguay to suspend the decision allowing the controversial Botnia/UPM pulp mill a production expansion and also demanded an immediate return to bilateral negotiations.
Residents from Gualeguaychú, Argentina confirmed that on Sunday they will attempt crossing an international bridge to Uruguay to protest the production expansion of the pulp mill Botnia/UPM, authorized by the government of President Jose Mujica. This despite the fact Uruguayan officials anticipated that at the most “eight or nine” Argentine officials and representatives from the protestors will be allowed to meet with their Uruguayan counterparts to discuss the situation.
Foreign Minister Héctor Timerman has confirmed that Argentina will go before the international court of justice at The Hague over the decision of Uruguayan president José Mujica, who on Wednesday authorised increased production at the UPM (ex-Botnia) paper plant.
Argentine President Cristina Fernández met on Monday with her Uruguayan counterpart José Mujica after the pair inaugurated a new vessel belonging to the ferry company Buquebús, (which joins Montevideo with Buenos Aires), in order to discuss matters related to the controversial UPM pulp plant formerly known as Botnia.
Uruguay’s president Jose Mujica anticipated that his intention is to authorize the UPM pulp mill to expand production, as the Finnish company had requested, but conditioned to certain additional environmental measures, which will not be made public until talks with Argentine president Cristina Fernandez on Monday.
Uruguay’s largest pulp mill UPM announced that it will be making final checks of the plant’s equipment in the rest of the week, following on annual maintenance work, but production is not scheduled to resume until the Finnish company receives a reply from President Jose Mujica regarding the output expansion request.