Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. Energy News .




ENERGY NEWS
Power plant threat to Bosnia oasis
by Staff Writers
Hutovo Blato, Bosnia-Hercegovina (AFP) Oct 17, 2013


In the mountains of southern Bosnia, a narrow canal carved through dense vegetation leads to a vast lake of crystal blue.

This is Hutovo Blato, one of the largest habitats for migratory birds in the Balkans, a nature reserve stretching over some 7,400 hectares (18,300 acres).

But the pristine landscape could soon be no more than a barren desert, environmental activists and farmers warn, with its water resources under threat from the construction of three hydro-plants in Bosnia and one in neighbouring Croatia.

"This project endangers the last traces of Mediterranean wetlands in the Neretva river delta and we are fighting to protect them," Zoran Mateljak of Bosnia's branch of the WWF environmental group told AFP.

Ornithologist Marinko Dalmatin warned that if the project "is realised, the Hutovo Blato swamp will turn into a peat-bog, a completely degraded zone with no value."

"There will be no more water, all birds and other animals will leave and we will only be able to plant corn here," he said.

The project for a hydro-power system in Bosnia and Croatia was first launched almost 40 years ago. At the time, four plants were built along the Trebisnjica river, which flows into the Adriatic sea, near the famed medieval port of Dubrovnik.

Four more plants were to be built in the countryside behind the Adriatic, but the work was halted by the 1990s Balkan wars and the break-up of the former Yugoslavia.

Now, faced with growing demand for clean energy, Bosnia -- one of the six republics that emerged from the communist Yugoslav federation -- has resumed construction of the final three plants on its territory.

Croatia has also began work on its new plant, near Dubrovnik.

The Bosnian Serb and Croatian public power companies together want to increase annual production from the current 2,800 gigawatt hours (GWh) per year, to 3,900 GWh.

Investment in the final phase of the system is estimated at almost 800 million euros ($1 billion). The first new Bosnian plant, called "Dabar", is expected to come on line in 2017, producing some 250 GWh of electricity per year, its manager Radivoje Bratic said.

'A salt desert within 15 to 20 years'

Bosnia uses only 30 percent of its hydro power potential, experts say, and is one of the rare electricity exporters in southeastern Europe.

But to feed the new plants requires changing the course of the Zalomka river and its tributaries rivers flowing from mountains to the Hutovo Blato wetlands and the Neretva river delta.

This could spell disaster for the delta, one of the main sources of farmland irrigation in Bosnia and Croatia.

"They do not ask us about anything, the energy lobbies are stronger," said Nikola Zovko, head of the nature park in Hutovo Blato.

A few kilometres (miles) south of Hutovo Blato, fruit-growers and farmers from the region of Metkovic, in Croatia's southern Adriatic coast hinterland, fear their water supply for irrigation will one day run completely dry.

The area is already affected by salinisation of the soil, because farmers are drawing brackish delta water to water their fields.

Reducing the flow of fresh water upstream will further increase the salt component in the water they use.

Environmental activist Zeljko Maric warns the area could become a "salt desert within the next 15 to 20 years."

"If more water is diverted, salinisation will further increase," Maric said.

Mate Kaleb, an agronomist and citrus fruit farmer from Metkovic, said water for irrigation in the Neretva delta already contains 2,000 milligrammes of salt per litre.

"Normal water contains 350 mg per litre, sea water 3,000 to 4,000 mg per litre. The numbers speak for themselves," Kaleb said.

The "Dabar" plant manager, Bratic, said that while the course of surface waters would have to be changed, the consequences for the eco-system would not be disastrous.

"Our goal is to reduce serious effects... and we have also planned measures to intervene if necessary."

Nebojsa Jerkovic, a local official in charge of rural development, estimates that the profit generated by electricity sales from new plants would be the same as from the region's tangerine plantations, around 30 million euros annually.

"For them (the plants' builders), water is not a joint wealth that everyone should benefit from," he charged.

.


Related Links







Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News





ENERGY NEWS
Balancing Geological Potential and Political Risk
Washington DC (SPX) Oct 16, 2013
From Kurdistan to Somaliland, for independent oil companies, getting your hands on new exploration acreage where both technical risk and political risk are low is impossible. Exploring for oil and gas in new frontiers is all about striking the right balance between geological potential and political risk. Take it from Anglo-Turkish Genel Energy, the largest producer in the Kurdistan Region of Ir ... read more


ENERGY NEWS
Power plant threat to Bosnia oasis

Global Hydropower Market Continuing to Grow, with Asia-Pacific Keeping the Lead

Balancing Geological Potential and Political Risk

US push for electric power surge in Africa hits climate snag

ENERGY NEWS
Chevron in US court to block $19bn Ecuador fine

Senior Dutch diplomat beaten up in Russia

China and Russia to boost energy cooperation

Troubled Somalia hustles Big Oil to resume exploration

ENERGY NEWS
Key German lawmaker: End renewable energy subsidies by 2020

Installation of the first AREVA turbines at Trianel Windpark Borkum and Global Tech 1

Trump's suit to halt wind farm project to be heard in November

Ireland connects first community-owned wind farm to grid

ENERGY NEWS
KYOCERA Announces Strategic Alliance with IronRidge for Solar Module Mounting Systems

PROINSO presents PV-DIESEL hybrid systems

Trina Solar chief scientist at PVSEC 2013

Trina Solar wins System Integration prize at 2013 Solar Industry Awards

ENERGY NEWS
Britain to allow Chinese majority stakes in nuclear projects: Osborne

Mitsubishi says to defend $4bn claim over US nuke plant

Post-Fukushima, Asia still drives global nuclear growth

Once-in-a-decade typhoon heads for Japan nuclear plant

ENERGY NEWS
Ethanol not a major factor in reducing gas prices

Boeing, South African Airways Launch Sustainable Aviation Biofuel Effort in Southern Africa

Metabolically engineered E. coli producing phenol

Team uses a cellulosic biofuels byproduct to increase ethanol yield

ENERGY NEWS
Ten Years of Chinese Astronauts

NASA vows to review ban on Chinese astronomers

China criticises US space agency over 'discrimination'

NASA ban on Chinese scientists 'inaccurate': lawmaker

ENERGY NEWS
US Supreme Court to hear greenhouse gas cases

'Stadium waves' could explain lull in global warming

US Supreme Court agrees to hear greenhouse gas cases

Terrestrial ecosystems at risk of major shifts as temperatures increase




The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement