Final conference of the ‘Inclusive Decarbonization Activity - IDA‘ project

Organized within the Energy Summit in Trebinje

March 27, 2023


The final conference on the ‘Inclusive Decarbonization’ (IDA) project was held within the fourth Energy Summit (SET), which was organized from 22 to 24 March 2023 in Trebinje. The project was implemented by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Relations of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and thanks to the financial support of the Government of Japan.

In the past 12 months, important activities were initiated through this project towards introduction of a just transition mechanism to a low-carbon economy in BiH. The goal of these efforts is to support BiH to reduce its high fossil fuel dependency in a just and gender-responsive manner, as well as in the concrete implementation of its climate plan. One of the key results of the project is the development of the first strategic document ‘Just Transition for All’, as well as strategic guidelines for a just transition in three carbon intense industries (power, steel and cement). In addition, the project provided financial and technical support for the decarbonization of 20 small and medium-sized enterprises from these industries, which will significantly facilitate their transition, through the use of the energy efficiency potentials and renewable energy sources in their future business and development. This will also bring them numerous benefits, among others, the reduction of heating and electricity costs, as well as more stable power supply from renewable energy sources.

This is part of UNDP’s global initiative ‘Climate Promise’, which helps 120 countries around the world to meet their commitments under the Paris Agreement, ensuring a clean and just energy transition towards a net-zero emissions and climate resilient future. This approach reflects UNDP’s strong commitment to fighting inequality and poverty while at the same time advancing climate action.
In her video message, Steliana Nedera, the Resident Representative of UNDP in BiH, addressed the participants and thanked the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Relations of BiH for the strong partnership in the implementation of the IDA project, as well as the Government of Japan for financial support.

As a signatory to the Sofia Declaration, BiH committed to work towards the 2050 target of carbon neutrality, and in its revised National Determined Contributions (NDC) to cut greenhouse gas emissions for 33.2% by 2030 and almost 66% by 2050, compared to 1990 levels.

Sanja Kapetina, the Head of the Department for Secondary Energy and Projects in the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Relations of BiH

We are working intensively on the adoption of an integrated energy climate plan that should define BiH’s goals for 2030 and determine the direction of development of the energy sector and its decarbonization until 2050. This process started a long time ago and it needs to be accelerated despite all the complexities and obstacles. First of all, it requires significant investments, but delayed decarbonization is more expensive.
Sanja Kapetina, the Head of the Department for Secondary Energy and Projects in the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Relations of BiH, emphasized the importance of a strategic approach to decarbonization and energy transition.

In addition to social, gender equality is also important in this process, which is primarily ensured through the preparation and implementation of strategic documents, as well as the inclusion of gender issues in energy policies and the empowerment of women’s participation in the economic development of the country. In order to achieve this, the project explored the interconnection between gender, poverty and access to sustainable energy, as well as identified important elements specific to the country context that should be taken into account to ensure that the transition does not exacerbate existing inequalities but instead promotes equality, leaving no one behind. These activities were complemented by capacity building of all relevant stakeholders, vulnerable groups and industry, including through the training that was organized for the first time for coal mine workers in Banovići.

Siniša Rodić, the Programme Manager in the field of Energy at UNDP BiH

Adequate studies need to be developed in order to identify the potential projects in this area and what effects can be achieved, but most importantly, what measures must be taken. All these parameters are important for a just transition to happen and to reduce the negative effects to industries, small and medium enterprises, citizens, women, youth and society as a whole, and we hope that this will be the first step towards a just, sustainable and green future of BiH.
Siniša Rodić, the Programme Manager in the field of Energy at UNDP BiH, emphasized the importance of the energy sector for the country’s economy.

The support provided through the IDA project is also important due to the fact that the European Union, with the aim of achieving climate neutrality by 2050, from this year has been gradually introducing the Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM) – the so-called ‘carbon tax’ for goods imported into EU Member States.  This will directly affect the Western Balkans, including BiH, which heavily relies on fossil fuels in the production of goods that are exported to the EU market.