International meeting of hydro and coal campaigners held on Šolta island
From July 16th to 19th 2018 an international meeting of anti-hydro and anti-coal activists was held in Solar Academy on Šolta island, Croatia, organized by Zelena akcija/Friends of the Earth Croatia. It gathered more than 30 participants from 21 organisations and 10 countries (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Georgia, Macedonia, Montenegro, Mozambique, Serbia and Slovenia).
The first part of the meeting was dedicated to exchange of information on the state of various anti-hydro and anti-coal campaigns in the SEE region, as well as on wider EU and international picture and trends, laying the foundation for discussions that followed. An especially important and interesting contribution to this part was sharing of experiences of people from Fojnica and Kruščica (B&H) engaged in very successful local community organising and resistance. Of special note was also a presentation by FoE Mozambique on the coal and hydro situation in that African country which gave the whole meeting a wider international perspective.
The second part of the meeting was dedicated to strategic discussions on how to take the work that is already being done further and how to have more synergy between various campaigns in the region, culminating in mapping of needs, interests and resources already available in the region, that will feed into the process of planing a future regional partnership.
On July 19th an annual general meeting (AGM) of SEENET, a regional network of environmental CSOs that work on energy, climate change, transport and natural resources from the perspective of environmental protection and sustainability, was also held, as a majority of organisations that participated in the meeting are also SEENET members.
On this AGM the network accepted three new member groups (United anglers of Serbia from Serbia and Ecological-humanitarian association Gotuša, Fojnica and Bistro Kruščica from Bosnia and Herzegowina), growing the membership of the network to 35 organisations. Also discussed was the future coordination of the network, including endorsing a network coordinator and a new coordination board consisting of CEKOR (Serbia), Center for Environment (Bosnia and Herzegovina), and Zelena akcija (Croatia).
The meeting has been financially supported by Pro Natura / Friends of the Earth Switzerland.