abusesaffiliationarrow-downarrow-leftarrow-rightarrow-upattack-typeburgerchevron-downchevron-leftchevron-rightchevron-upClock iconclosedeletedevelopment-povertydiscriminationdollardownloademailenvironmentexternal-linkfacebookfiltergenderglobegroupshealthC4067174-3DD9-4B9E-AD64-284FDAAE6338@1xinformation-outlineinformationinstagraminvestment-trade-globalisationissueslabourlanguagesShapeCombined Shapeline, chart, up, arrow, graphLinkedInlocationmap-pinminusnewsorganisationotheroverviewpluspreviewArtboard 185profilerefreshIconnewssearchsecurityPathStock downStock steadyStock uptagticktooltiptwitteruniversalityweb
NGO Rejoinder

5 Dec 2022

Foundation Atelier for Community Transformation – ACT,
Save the Blue Heart of Europe,
Stop building small hydropower plants on Kasindolska river

Rejoinder from Riverwatch & 4 other organisations to Green Invest’s response

... While Green Invest believes that its engagement in BiH meets the criteria for sustainable development, unfortunately, the experience of the communities affected by these infrastructure projects is very different.

... The business in small hydropower in BiH started intensively more than ten years ago promising to bring economic development and green transition. In practice, however, the economic benefits to the communities are negligible... River activists fought for over 10 years to present the reality of small hydropower plants to the government and members of the Parliament... In February 2021, the Republika Srpska National Assembly adopted the Declaration for River Protection, which urged all levels of authority to take measures and protect rivers from devastation also created by small hydropower plants.

... These victories showcase the importance of civic engagement and community participation especially when projects are not in the local communities’ best interest. They also highlight why activists and human rights defenders must be able to express their opinions on issues of public interest without fears of reprisal.

...[W]e have noted in our open letter to the Belgian Ambassador in BiH, signed by 145 organizations from around the world, BUK d.o.o. had continued operating for nine months...despite the fact that the District Court in Banja Luka had at the time revoked the environmental permit.

... Following analysis of legal documents and other materials, Amnesty International classified the defamation lawsuits against the two activists fighting for Kasindolska river as Strategic Lawsuits against Public Participation... Sara and Sunčica are not driven to action by distrust of foreigners, as suggested by Green Invest, but by a strong desire to prevent what they see as potentially irreparable damage to the environment caused by small hydropower plants on the river that is an inseparable part of their lives.

Part of the following timelines

Sunčica Kovačević

Sara Tuševljak