28 Innovations to Decarbonize the Economy and Alleviate Energy Poverty

September 6, 2023


Belgrade, 6 September 2023 – 28 companies in total, from all over Serbia presented today their innovative solutions for decarbonization, just green transition of the economy and support to energy deprived households. These solutions’ goal is to contribute to energy efficiency, utilisation of renewable energy sources, and more efficient use of natural resources, as well as to enable the creation of “green” jobs and alleviate energy poverty. The teams behind these solutions will work with mentors in order to develop their ideas for implementation in practice, while the most successful will also be co-financed.

The event was organised by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), with the support of the Government of Japan and in partnership with the Ministry of Environmental Protection and the Ministry of Mining and Energy of the Republic of Serbia. 

Japanese Ambassador to Serbia, His Excellency Akira Imamura said that the solutions by these companies showed the importance of engaging the business community, as green transformation and decarbonization could not be attained without it. 

“Their proposals are unique and evidence a great variety of solutions when it comes to energy sources, including biomass, solar and heating energy, and human power even. Also, many of these have been designed to utilise innovative business models and thus benefit vulnerable segments of the society, including small enterprises, local populations, and women,” added the Japanese Ambassador to Serbia.

“In order to secure for the green transition to also be just, in addition to implementing innovations, it is also necessary to provide adequate support to the most vulnerable individuals and groups,” said Yakup Beris, UNDP Resident Representative. “Together with the companies, we will work on enabling energy vulnerable households to replace individual fossil fuel facilities and transition to cleaner and renewable sources of energy. Simultaneously, we will map energy vulnerable households in the country, so as to help the Serbian Government to use these data in adopting new measures and improving the existing legislation, so as to alleviate energy poverty,” clarified Beris. 

State Secretary in the Ministry of Environmental Protection, Sandra Dokić stated that, compared to 2015, Serbia adopted three times more ambitious Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) when it comes to decreasing emission of the greenhouse gases (GHG), as well as the Low-Carbon Development Strategy which indicates clear guidelines for decarbonization of the economy. Dokić also expressed her expectation for these 28 solutions to contribute to the decarbonization of the economy and attainment of the defined goals. 

“It is highly important that these private and public companies, as well as one local self-government unit, proposed ideas that contribute to decarbonization, but also general protection of the environment. We find support by international partners to be important, as well as a good response by the actors for whom these projects have been intended, so that we may succeed in the green transformation of Serbia,” said Dokić. 

The innovative solutions presented at the event included the idea by the “Elektropionir” Energy Cooperative from Belgrade, which, together with the “Organela” organic farm, plans to utilise solar power in the process of organic food production, where networking of energy and agricultural cooperatives would be especially important for the fulfilment of this idea.  

The “Toyo Tire Serbia” company will recycle tires to make street furniture, whereby the harmful impact of tire waste to environment would be decreased. The family company which produces heating, cooling and ventilation solutions, “KGH Inženjering” from Zaječar plans to install solar panels and connect them to the flower greenhouse operated by the family members, as well as air-to-water heat pumps to supply heating and cooling for business premises.  

The “Join” Company from Novi Pazar which produces jeans, plans to build a solar power plant, as well as to install filters to purify smoke from the boiler room chimneys, which would prevent polluting particles to be released into the atmosphere. The solution by the “Beo čista energija” Company enables the shutting down and rehabilitation of the Vinča landfill, by building a facility for the energy utilisation of waste and landfill gases.  

This event was organised within the project entitled “Innovative and Just Green Transition in Securing Systemic Energy Security and Decreasing Energy Poverty” implemented by UNDP in partnership with the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Ministry of Mining and Energy of the Republic of Serbia and with the support by the Government of Japan.