October 7, 2022

The Supreme Court of the Canary Islands approves the concession for the installation of the Thirty Meter Telescope on La Palma

Santa Cruz de Tenerife (EFE).- The Chamber of Administrative Disputes of the Supreme Court of the Canary Islands has revoked the decision of a court annulling the license granted by the Cabildo of La Palma to the Institute of Astrophysics of the Canary Islands for the installation of the 30 meter telescope in Puntagorda.

Ben Magec-Ecologistas en Acción had canceled said license on the understanding that the beneficiary of that facility was not the IAC, but the international consortium promoting this infrastructure.

The controversial Administrative Court No. 2 of Santa Cruz de Tenerife issued a ruling in July 2019 upholding the appeal of the environmental organization, on the understanding that the resolution of the Cabildo de La Palma for the expansion of the land of the Roque de Los Observatory Guys , on La Palma it did not fit well.

In the sense known today, the TSJC does take into account the insular company’s considerations that the IAC has the right to apply for the concession because the consideration of a public consortium is considered in the law regulating it and the authority to apply for the concession. management of existing astronomical centers, observatories and facilities and those created or incorporated into their management in the future.

It adds that the IAC actively participates in the use and funding of the TMT, as stated in the agreement signed between the two entities, and also recognizes the Institute of Astrophysics’ authority to directly obtain public concessions, as in this case is the case by the Municipality of Puntagorda.

The ruling emphasizes that “no greater dialectical effort is required” to conclude that the IAC has the right to administer the land where the observatories are located and that the fact that the TMT is owned by a legal entity other than the IAC, which does not affect their legality to apply for and obtain the public concession.

In the opinion of the Chamber, the public interest present in the process and the nature of the public law consortium of the IAC justify the direct award of the concession, insofar as this is necessary to fulfill a public service function or to fulfill an objective of general public interest. interest.

The verdict is not final and there is an appeal against it to the Supreme Court. EFE

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