Eco Activists Lambaste Plans to Build Small Power Plants on a River

Members of several environmental organizations came down hard on an environment impact study, commissioned by an investor, according to which the construction of a small power plant on a river near the town of Konjic would be acceptable. The study on the impact of Dindo plant on Ljuta river was discussed in a public event in Konjic this week, where environmentalists strongly opposed the construction of that and six other small plants on Ljuta.

“(Construction of) power plants is planned on almost all of 244 rivers in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Those are private investments in which the taxpayers’ money is invested, which is robbing people while destroying the nature in the process. We don’t expect the politicians to come to their senses. We will defend one river at a time until this madness stops,” said Nataša Crnković of Banja Luka’s Center for Environment.

Anes Podić of Sarajevo’s Eko akcija said that the Slovenian investor couldn’t say how much of that country is environment-protected: “54% of Slovenia and 2% of Bosnia is protected. The zoning plan of 1981, still in force, designates this area as part of a national park with Igman, Bjelašnica and Treskavica (mountains) and the Rakitnica canyon. Establishing a national park would create conditions to create hundreds of jobs in the rural parts of Konjic municipality that experience an ongoing depopulation.”

Džana Bordanić of Sarajevo’s Terra Dinarica said Bosnia’s canyons and gorges are specific landscapes: “They are the development cores for flora, fauna and vegetation, and biodiversity refuges. We have not only potential, but wonderful examples of intact nature attracting tourists and driving the development of local communities. The study is strikingly missing the data on flora and fauna, which indicates that the literature or terrain research wasn’t done.  Construction of hydropower plants irreversibly destroys ecosystems and disturbs the complex connections between the species.”

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