The Campaign “Battle for Sutjeska” was launched in 2013 as a response to plans for the construction of small hydropower plants in Sutjeska National Park.
Investor Drina Hydro Energy plans to build five small hydropower plants in National Park Sutjeska, two on the Sutjeska River and three on Hrcavka River.
These small hydro-power plants would have a significant negative effect on the biodiversity, tourism activities and on the further management of the park itself.
In fact Sutjeska is the oldest national park in Bosnia and Herzegovina and one of the areas with the highest biodiversity in South-East Europe, with the most valuable parts in Sutjeska and Hrcavka canyons and the nature reserve Perućica (which is internationally recognized and protected as one of the rarely preserved European rainforests). These canyons are biodiversity hot-spots and some of their habitats are Natura 2000 habitats (3220, 3240, 8210). Moreover one of the planned small hydro-power plants should be located very close to Perućica nature reserve.
Since Government of Republic of Srpska reclaimed public interest on it, the construction of small hydro-power plants is allowed by the Law on National Parks. Still, it is in conflict with European Union and international legislation (Habitat Directive, Bern Directive, and Convention of Biological Diversity – CBD).
With “Battle for Sutjeska” campaign Center for Environment and its partners aim to open public debate on this issue and finally to stop the plans for the construction of those hydro-power plants. Moreover Center for Environment is asking competent institutions to approach further similar projects strategically and with caution.