The Energy Regulation Board (ERB) has suspended the issuance of construction permits for new filling stations within Lusaka District, for the next 6 months.
The Board has also stopped reviewing Environmental Project Briefs (EPBs) for new filling stations in Lusaka district for the same period.
Among the revised siting guidelines for filling stations is the allowable distance between operating filling stations from 500 meters to 300 meters countrywide with immediate effect.
This was contained in a statement issued to ZANIS by ERB Public Relations Manager Kwali Mfuni, in Lusaka today.
Ms Mfuni has, however, assured that the revised guidelines on construction permits, won’t apply to proposed rehabilitation, and reconstruction or already existing filling stations.
In highlighting the resolutions of the Board, she further remarked on the board’s resolution to constitute a multi-sectoral technical committee consisting of various experts from relevant government ministries and agencies to facilitate the refinement of guidelines in the said period.
“The said committee would conduct a comprehensive study during the six (06) months period to assess the risks associated with the existing concentration of filling stations in the various localities in Lusaka town as well as the feasibility and consequent impact of approving additional filling stations within Lusaka,” she noted
Mfuni also alluded to the guidelines as being a result of efforts by the Board to ensure it executes its mandate more effectively amidst the dynamics that have become apparent in the petroleum sub-sector.
“In 2019 the ERB commenced the process of revising the Guidelines for Siting of filling stations in response to emerging issues in the petroleum sub-sector,” she said.
“The revised Siting Guidelines have since been subjected to extensive stakeholder consultation and there still remain some planned further engagements before the siting guidelines are finalized,” Ms Mfuni Concluded.