Ethanol manufacturing firm, GreenFuel, says it submitted an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) report in February last year in line with legislative requirements stipulating the prerequisites for the operation of plants such as the Chisumbanje ethanol refinery.
In statement, GreenFuel said owing to the scope of the project, EMA at the time indicated it did not have internal experts to carry out the environmental assessment.
As a result GreenFuel said it was then directed to make payments of over $100 000 for the engagement of independent experts from the University of Zimbabwe, who duly conducted site visits to the plant, reviewed the EIA file and gave a green light.
During the compilation of the EIA report, GreenFuel placed numerous notices in all the major daily newspapers inviting relevant stakeholders for dialogue on the proposed plant.
Extensive stakeholder consultative processes were held at Middle Sabi and Chisumbanje, aimed at exhaustively addressing community concerns on the social impact of the project, reads part of the statement.
The company said it was subsequently issued with relevant licences supporting its operations and these include the Industrial Effluent Disposal Licence.
It said EMA teams routinely visit GreenFuel premises for periodic monitoring and no concerns have been raised against the submitted EIA.