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MAP - Développement énergétique : L’ONEE, le GSEP et l’UM6P scellent un partenariat pour la promotion de l’excellence académique
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MAP - La formation à la gestion culturelle et matérielle au menu du Festival 'Ciné-université' de Casablanca
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NNA - جمعية حماية الطبيعة في لبنان: تنبيه من خبير نسور في إستونيا بعد توقف طائر لقلق أسود عن ارسال بيانات قرب كفرسلوان
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NNA - Launch of 'Karama-Beirut Human Rights Film Festival' –5th Edition in cooperation with the UN and Czech Embassy
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MAP - Bern: Swiss-African Parliamentary Friendship Group Praises Moroccan Experience in Sustainable Development
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MAP - EBRD, EU and GCF Partner with Bank of Africa BMCE Group to Fight Global Warming in Morocco
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HINA - Coal power plants in Western Balkans causing deaths of thousands of people




ZAGREB, 12 Sept (Hina)-Western Balkan coal-fired power plants continue to pose a serious threat to the environment in that region as well as in the European Union, having caused the deaths of at least 19,000 persons, including over 10,000 persons in the EU, in the period from 2018 to 2020.

These are the findings of a report released this week by environmental associations CEE Bankwatch Network and the Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air (CREA).

European Union countries are still the main buyers of exported electricity produced by power plants in the Western Balkans, but it represents a mere 0.3% of total electricity consumption, the production of which at the same time accounts for nearly half of the air pollution in Europe.

According to the analysts of the two associations, 10,800 persons have died in the past three years as a result of air pollution from the power plants, while 6,500 have died in the Western Balkans.

In 2020 alone, coal-fired power plants in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, North Macedonia, Montenegro and Kosovo emitted two and a half times as much sulphur dioxide (SO2) as all other such power plants in the EU. At the same time, they released 1.6 times as much dust particles as foreseen by national emissions reduction plans (NERP) for 2018-2020.

The total three-year costs for the countries affected by air pollution are estimated at €25.3 billion to as much as €51.8 billion.

In 2020, Western Balkan coal-fired power plants were the cause of additional costs for treatments and health care systems and they reduced economic effects in the amount of at least €6 billion and potentially up to €12 billion

All Western Balkan countries have breached pollution limits from the national emissions reduction plans, so the secretariat of the Energy Community, which brings together countries of the EU and the Balkan region, initiated dispute settlement procedures.

The biggest breaches were recorded in Serbia, whose power plants emitted over 333 tonnes of SO2 in 2020, exceeding the amount emitted by as many as 221 coal power stations in the EU.

The single largest SO2 polluter is Bosnia and Herzgovina's Ugljevik power plant, which emitted over 107 tonnes of SO2 last year.

The analysis underscores that due to its geographical connection with the Western Balkans, the EU must apply its environmental policy more decisively in that region as well, which means insisting on the application of new technology and gradual closure of coal power plants in order to produce electricity from renewable sources as soon as possible.

Warnings about the need for the EU's more decisive approach to the problem of air pollution in the Western Balkans came at a time when the countries in that region, such as Bosnia and Herzegovina, were considering the possibility of building new coal power plants.

Despite the opposition from the EU, Bosnia and Herzegovina's Elektroprivreda power company, with the support of the Federation entity's government, plans to build a new block of thermal power station in Tuzla that could be based on Chinese technology.

The thermal power station near Doboj, which was built in 2016 and is the largest dust polluter in that part of Bosnia and Herzegovina, is also equipped with Chinese technology.

(Hina) ll

Agency : HINA

Date : 2021-09-14 10:39:00







 

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