Center for Environment held an action called “The future we demand” in Banja Luka, where they presented the open letter which was handed in to the governments on all levels of Bosnia and Herzegovina. In the letter, which was signed by 22 environmental civil society organisations from BiH, are demands for a transparent and participatory approach during the making of the Framework Energy Strategy of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The action came about after the organisations attained information that the Energy strategy is finally being made, and while they welcomed the start of the process they also expressed their concern over the lack of transparency and the short deadline for its creation and adoption.
Duška Kudra, Energy and Climate Change Program Coordinator, Center for Environment: “The Energy Strategy is among key documents in development of any country since energy is one of the key factors for economic development and security. It is for this reason that we want to turn the attention of the public towards this procedure, and the fact that it has started. Coordination of the making of the strategy has been given to the consultancy PriceWaterhouseCoopers and the adoption of the final document is planned for this year’s June. This is troubling for a number of reasons, namely due to a lack of transparency, while the short deadline given for such an important document shows a clear lack of strategic thinking”.
Center for Environment, together with other organisations, has for years been warning the public that the energy system of BiH is being developed without plans, in a non-transparent manner and opposite to world trends. Exactly ten years ago, the same goal and message united 11 civil society organisations in a similar action during the “Public participation in the development of the Energy Strategy of BiH” campaign. However, today, ten years later, next to nothing has been done.
Denis Žiško, Energy program coordinator, Center for Ecology and Energy: „Unplaned development of the energy system is one of the biggest problems in BiH, one which is talked about only when a thermal power plant publishes that it’s operating in the red, when an extraordinary pollution event occurs or the electricity price goes up. But at that point it’s too late”.
Not having an energy strategy has created the state where facilities like coal thermal power plants or hydro power plants are being developed without clear economic calculations with faulty Environmental Impact Analysis and without a long-term analysis of electricity needs in BiH.
Rijad Tikveša, Ekotim, president: „We have been fighting against the construction of new coal TPPs due to the consequences they have on the environment and the economy. While all the developed countries are, due to their awareness of climate change and in line with stricter laws on pollution and CO2 emissions trading schemes, turning towards renewables and energy efficiency, our politicians are still stubborn in their intent to develop outdated technologies. “.
Organisations also stated that the energy system of BiH is at a crossroads – the investments that are expected are major and long-term and their consequences are far reaching. They wanted to let those in charge know that they have been calling for this process for years and that they will continue following it and will keep informing the public of BiH about it.
 The open letter can be read here. The letter was signed by the following organisations: Centar za životnu sredinu, Centar za ekologiju i energiju, Centar za održivi razvoj i ekologiju (CORIE), Centar za održivi razvoj (COR), Centar za krš i speleologiju, LIR Evolution, OKC Bosna Art, Zeleni Neretva, Eko forum Zenica, Ekotim, Ekoakcija, Eko Leonardo, Eko Put, Eko Element, Aarhus centar u BiH, Ekogotuša, Eko zona Šipovo, Centar za zastupanje građanskih interesa (CPI), Alternative Kakanj, Nova vizija, Novi val, UG Naše ptice