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  • ESG on Nature Group – Storage or Treatment? 19/05/14


    ESG Press Release  – 19th May 2014

    Nature Group –  Storage or Treatment?



    The ESG would like to express its surprise at the news published in the media recently, that Nature Group intends to gain permission to resume treatment at its Sullage Plant site at the Western Arm.


    The ESG sits on the Development and Planning Commission, where, only three weeks ago, and after lengthy discussions, the said company was able to get its application through only on the strictest assurance that this would be for storage purposes only.


    The Minister for the Environment abstained, the ESG objected and the Department of the Environment made plain its advice that approval should be strictly for storage purposes only. The Town Planner recommended approval to storage only among a number of other conditions.


    The ESG considers the public statement made by Nature Group chairman, challenges the mandate given to the company by the DPC. The categorical assurances given by all company representatives at the DPC meeting made it clear it would not be treating waste at their rebuilt site. The fact is that had Nature Group been clear of its intention to resume treatment onsite in future, it would not have received approval.


    The ESG asks what are the implications, if any, for the permission obtained by Nature given its very public statement to suggest its real plans for the future.


    The ESG notes that Nature continues to serve its own interests by also calling in claims from the Gibraltar Government for recent works. However, the ESG would like to issue a reminder that a local court case over culpability on the explosion at its site on Western Arm remains unresolved, as is, compensation to the family who tragically lost a young father working at this site.













    (article referred to front page in the Gibraltar Chronicle  as per extract attached)



    1. Extract from Chronicle article dated 9th May 2014 – of Nature at work at London’s AIM stock exchange




    Nature Group has reached an insurance settlement of £1.35m for material damage and business interruption caused by the explosion at its North Mole storage facility in May 2011.

The claim had been initially knocked back by the underwriters but was finally settled after extensive negotiations.

    The figure was detailed in a 2013 results statement to the London AIM stock exchange yesterday, in which the company also pointed toward long-term plans to seek agreement to renew treatment operations once its terminal is rebuilt.

Nature received planning permission to rebuild the site last April, but the approval was for storage only. “Our recommendation [to the Development and Planning Commission] to establish a Liaison Committee to monitor our activities is likely to be adopted and we anticipate an early agenda item will be to seek agreement to initiate treatment, after the storage area of the plant has been rebuilt and commissioned which is anticipated to take 12 months,” said Nature Group chairman Nigel Sandy in a statement.

Kieron Becerra, Nature’s locally-based chief financial officer, told the Chronicle the company had worked to establish a positive rapport with the Gibraltar Government following the explosion.

He said the aim was to ensure officials and the community understood Nature’s business – the group’s facilities collect and recycle oily ship waste, a requirement for all EU ports under international law – and were reassured about its safety standards.”


    (NB. ESG highlight and underline)