Illustrative photo – Hearing of the case of poisoning of the Bečva River by the Energoaqua company from September 2020, January 30, 2023, District Court, Vsetín.
Vsetín – In 2020, the company Liss, which deals with the surface treatment of metals, supplied Energoaqua with approximately 140 containers of wastewater containing cyanide for cleaning. At the Vsetín district court, which is discussing the poisoning of the Bečva river on September 20, 2020, this was stated today by witness Robert Lovecký, vice-chairman of the board of directors of Liss. So-called IBC containers have a volume of 1000 liters. Energoaqua is being sued for the accident, along with its director Oldřich Havelka.
According to public prosecutor Jiří Sachro, Energoaqua caused the pollution of the Bečva with poisonous cyanides and hexavalent chromium on at least 37 kilometers of the river. The representative of the company Vladimír Kurka and Havelka denied guilt in the case. For damaging and endangering the environment and unauthorized handling of protected wild animals and wild plants, Havelka faces up to five years in prison, a ban on the company's activities and a fine.
On the basis of the contracts, Liss supplied the Energoaqua company with water containing cyanides long term. According to Lovecký, the concentration of cyanides in it ranged from 200 to 1,000 milligrams per liter. “We measured the concentration of cyanides, but not much. It was busy traffic, it still ran the same way. The concentrations did not change,” said Lovecký.
Liss company technologist Vít Kašpárek said that during full production, approximately one so-called IBC container with cyanide water was sent from the company to Energoaqua every day. He also confirmed that the random analyzes that Liss did showed that the maximum concentration of total cyanides in the water was one gram per liter. “In 2019, when we were driving at full speed, we consumed around 350 kilograms of potassium cyanide per year. In 2020, it was much lower, because covid limited us there. It was an estimated 100 to 150 kilograms,” said Kašpárek.< /p>
A few weeks after the accident in Bečva, Energoaqua terminated the contract for the abstraction of cyanide water with the Liss company. “I think the last shipment was at the end of November 2020, maybe one more IBC went in December. Energoaqua stopped taking it, they claimed that the sumps had to be inspected,” said Kašpárek. “I understand it in a way, the hysteria was great,” Lovecký said of the termination of the contract. According to him, Liss now cleans water containing cyanides in its own renovated treatment plant. The sixth day of the main trial will continue today after noon with the testimony of another witness.
The company Energoaqua manages the factory site in Rožnov pod Radhoštěm in the Vsetín region. It also provides wastewater treatment. They leave the area via the canal that flows into Bečva in Valašské Meziříčí. It was through this channel that cyanides and hexavalent chromium entered the river, according to Sachro. The indictment states that this resulted in a massive kill of more than 39 tons of fish. The poisoning affected the river in the section below Valašský Meziříčí as far as Přerov, according to experts, the poisonous substances there damaged the biotope and the conditions for all water-bound organisms.