A northern Greek court has awarded 91 million euros (31 billion drachmas) in compensation to the owners of a tannery that was closed down over eight years ago for polluting the environment, a report said yesterday. According to the Sunday Eleftherotypia, the Ioannina administrative court of first instance found that the government would have to compensate Euroderm SA, which operated in the area of Serviana, near Konitsa in northwestern Greece, for loss of revenue after the company was shut down by the local prefect in 1994. The reason cited at the time was that toxic waste from the tannery works was polluting the Aoos river. The Ioannina prefecture granted the tannery preliminary approval for its waste disposal system in 1981, and final approval was given in 1992. The company was issued a five-year operating permit in 1990, which was never renewed. But in January 1994, the Ioannina prefect publicly announced that he was recalling the permit due to pollution of the river. The court said Euroderm should be immediately paid the first 293,470 euros.