European Union Office in Kosovo 
European Union Special Representative in Kosovo

EU in Kosovo launches environment campaign and Climate Diplomacy Week

24/09/2018 - 16:51
News

Remarks by Riccardo Serri, Head of Political, Economic and European Integration Section, EU Office/EUSR

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Ladies and gentlemen, Dear friends,

Today, here at the National Library of Pristina, we launch together the campaign on Environment and the Climate Diplomacy Week.

We all know Kosovo. We are all familiar with its beautiful trees, forests, beautiful landscapes and rich biodiversity.

However, we all know Kosovo:

All these natural beauties can sometimes be neglected; polluted:

  • Contaminated soil, polluted rivers, Illegal constructions, illegal logging, waste water and solid waste is still the reality in Kosovo.
  • Not mention the bad air quality, particularly during the winter months.
  • The protection of the environment has been neglected for a long time in Kosovo.

Let me say that the European Union has done a lot for the environment in Kosovo. And is committed to do even more in the future

The EU is the leading donor for the improvement of the environment in Kosovo.

A large number of EU projects have a direct or indirect impact on the environment. Let me mention:

  • Construction of landfills, water waste treatment plant, and Air Quality Monitoring System.
  • The drinking water treatment plant projects have been recently completed in Mitrovica and Pristina and secure a reliable and safe drinking water supply to their residents.
  • We work with our MS Kosovo to  manage key environment issues including water and air quality
  • Not to mention our role in supporting the drafting and adoption of upgraded legislation aimed at protecting the environment in a number of areas
  • The European Union has funded a crucial study for the decommissioning of 'Kosovo A' old power plant, which will reduce significantly the air pollution in Kosovo.

We are planning even more for the future:

  • The entire decommissioning of Kosovo A and the construction of Hazardous Waste storage. This project will be the first of this kind in the region.
  • Efficient waste management infrastructure and services
  • Reduction of Dust and emissions at Kosovo B Power Plant, a programme of crucial importance for the living standards of the people of Kosovo.

Ladies and gentlemen,

The fact that Kosovo is still not part of the Paris Agreement on climate change does not mean that it is an isolated, remote island.

Kosovo is a key EU partner in the Balkans region, and needs to take steps in the direction that is in our common global interest:

To build a low-emission, climate-resilient economy and healthier society.

Environment is one of the crucial sectors for Kosovo’s path towards the European Union.

NOW is the right moment to focus on the best solutions for the protection of the environment.

A long list of regulations already adopted is still awaiting full implementation.

Several legal procedure and actions have to be undertaken.

The longer we delay the protection of the environment in Kosovo the higher the environmental pollution will become

This is why we strongly wanted these campaigns, the Environment Campaign and the Climate Diplomacy Week

The campaign on the Environment will last thru 14 of December, covering four principal thematic:

  • Water Management
  • Air Pollution
  • Waste Management and
  • Energy Efficiency

You have seen a sample of the two short movies, you will see more in a minute; and in the next months on TV and social media. We will sponsor debates and events throughout Kosovo for the next months.

The Climate Diplomacy Week will last from today Monday until next Sunday 30 September in close cooperation with the Embassies of France and Germany in Kosovo. You will hear more about that in a moment.

Through this endeavour over the next months we will raise awareness

  • on the protection of the environment
  • on what the EU has done, also collectively, to protect the environment and what we will continue to do in the future
  • on what still needs and can be done by the Kosovo authorities to improve the health and living standards of its people.
  • And we also want to call you, the people of Kosovo, to do more for the protection of your own environment

So let's protect the environment in Kosovo

Let's give Green a chance in Kosovo

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