Foto Boro Maric

Friends of the Earth Bosnia and Herzegovina/ The Center for Environment recently released a publication, short movie and photo series “National park Sutjeska – dead capital or laboratory in nature”, presenting scientific research from the canyons of the rivers Sutjeska and Hrčavka last summer.

Iva Miljević, Center for Environment said: “The main goal of this research was to gain stronger arguments in order to confirm the importance of preserving the oldest national park in Bosnia and Herzegovina and what is the potential impact of these hydro power plants’ construction and work on the environment”.

Over 100 people were present at the event held in the Musical pavilion in the Petar Kočić park in Banja Luka, including the majority of the experts from Bosnia and Herzegovina and the region that took part in the research.

Nataša Crnković, Center for Environment said: “We will not allow construction of hydro power plants, under any conditions. Flora and fauna in these rivers must remain preserved, and people in this area should be allowed development of the local community that will not jeopardize the unique nature in the Park“.

Within the campaign “Battle for Sutjeska”, the Center for Environment has been fighting for four years against the planned construction of five hydro power plants on the rivers Sutjeska and Hrčavka that would have significant negative impacts on the environment, which was confirmed by this research.

Đorđije Milanović, Arbor Magna: “This publication presents an example of how studies of environmental impact should be performed, with experts in different areas, and not how they have been performed by licensed companies so far. Studies registered 1,060 species that are dependant on the rivers in the National Park Sutjeska, 12 species that are found for the first time in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and these results are based on seven days research and this research will be continued next year”.

Ph.D. Čedomir Burlica, retired professor of the Faculty of Forestry: “National park Sutjeska indeed presents a laboratory in nature, whose doors are  locked because of someone’s careless act. Research like this should be supported at all levels, because we have so little knowledge of the living world in our country.”

The research was financially supported by Swiss organization Pro Natura/ Friends of the Earth Switzerland and ETNAR project, supported by the European Union.