A Russian court has temporarily shut down the Caspian Pipeline Consortium (CPC) oil terminal at Novorossiysk, a key export point for Kazakh oil, over environmental concerns.

CPC said in a statement on 6 July that the closure will last for 30 days.

The decision was taken by the Primorsky District Court of Novorossiysk to eliminate violations identified in an audit initiated in March by deputy prime minister Viktoria Abramchenko.

The audit revealed several documentary violations under the Oil Spill Response Plan.

CPC said it was forced to comply with the court’s decision but intends to appeal.

“The ruling will be appealed in accordance with the procedure established by law,” the consortium said.

Novorossiysk on the Black Sea is the main route to export oil from landlocked Kazakhstan, which accounts for about 90% of the terminal’s total crude exports.

Russia holds a 31% share in CPC, while Kazakhstan owns 20.75%. Chevron and other oil companies are also shareholders.

Exports from CPC were disrupted for about a month after two of its three single-point mooring buoys were damaged in a storm in March.

The CPC terminal ships 2m barrels of crude per day through its buoys off Novorossiysk. Kazakh oil exports through Novorossiysk have not been subject to sanctions against Russia so far.

German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung speculated that the Russian court decision may have stopped CPC exports in reprisal for recent statements by Kazakhstan’s President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, who offered to sell more oil and natural gas to Europe.