Activists help put the brakes on Balkan hydro projects
August 27, 2015
Balkan governments are under mounting pressure to curb the construction of hydropower plants (HPPs) in national parks and wildlife areas, where hundreds of projects are planned or underway. Environmental campaigners have already scored successes in halting new HPPs. In late July, Croatia’s environment ministry rejected Hrvatska Elektroprivreda’s impact study for its 68-MW Ombla HPP near historic Dubrovnik, Courts in Republika Srpska (RS) have twice this year backed activists’ claims that environmental assessments on proposed plants in the Sutjeska National Park were flawed.
Guest post: Croatia and the Energy Union: the European Commission’s unwarranted obsession with gas
August 20, 2015
Building the Energy Union, the European Commission pretends that all is well for renewables in Croatia and unnecessarily fixates on diversifying gas supply instead of managing demand.
[Campaign update] Ombla hydropower plant nature impact assessment rejected
August 10, 2015
The Croatian Ministry of Environment and Nature Protection has refused Hrvatska Elektroprovreda (HEP)’s nature impact assessment for the Ombla hydropower project near Dubrovnik.
Guest post: Ombla must be protected, not flooded!
April 21, 2015
The project promoter of the Ombla hydropower plant in Dubrovnik, Croatia is still stubbornly pushing the project forward. A presentation yesterday of a new nature impact assessment did not offer answers to a range of outstanding questions, including the project’s economic feasibility, impacts on locals and more.
EBRD environmental policy breaches on hydro plants confirmed by internal investigation
January 13, 2014
The EBRD has failed to properly assess 3 hydro projects it has approved for financing in Macedonia, Croatia and Georgia, according to bank internal investigations initiated after formal complaints by Bankwatch member groups. NGOs caution that, more than mere slips, these improper assessments are a symptom of what could be called bankers’ overconfidence – that is, a tendency to assume that all environmental damage can be ‘managed’, which from a business point of view is much more convenient than admitting that some projects simply should not go ahead.
UPDATED: Six months and counting… EBRD silent on investigations into its own operations
December 3, 2013
Is the EBRD deliberately dragging its feet on publishing investigation reports on large hydropower plants in Georgia, Macedonia and Croatia?
Invest in haste, repent at leisure – Are IFIs behaving as if EU accession criteria and extreme energy losses do not exist in South East Europe?
June 25, 2013
South-eastern Europe is riddled with poor planning and corruption in the energy sector and its governments are proving slow to react to the challenges and opportunities offered by the decarbonisation agenda.
A tale of neglect: Energy finance figures from the Western Balkans
June 25, 2013
The neglect by international financial institutions of the Western Balkans sustainable energy potential will cost the region’s public heavily for years to come. Figures collected in a new study illustrate how the different international lenders perform in the region.
Development banks energy investments jeopardise the ability of Balkan accession countries to meet EU energy and climate targets, says new report
June 25, 2013
Brussels, Belgium – Heavy investments in fossil fuels by international financial institutions (IFIs) in the Western Balkans are hindering these countries’ compliance with EU accession requirements, finds a new report – “Invest in Haste, Repent at Leisure” – from civil society organizations CEE Bankwatch Network, SEE Change Net and WWF, created as part of the SEE SEP (South East Europe Sustainable Energy Policy) programme.
Victory for civil society as EBRD cancels loan for controversial Croatian dam
May 28, 2013
Today we’re relieved in Zagreb as one energy project that could have had a destructive impact on Croatia’s future has lost its financing and thus its chances of going ahead are drastically reduced: I’m speaking about the infamous Ombla dam, a project for an underground hydropower plant that would have practically destroyed a protected area close to Dubrovnik.