Pollution from oil refinery in Sisak, Croatia

Over the years, the local people appeals against the pollution from the refinery of Sisak was replaced by the workers protests protecting their jobs and the future of the state-owned Oil Company INA - crucial for Croatian economy.


<div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Description</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld"></td><td class="columns">Oil refinery Sisak, runned by the state owned Oil Company INA, is located 50 km to the south of Croatian capital Zagreb. The refinery processes domestic and imported raw materials supplied through the Adriatic oil pipeline. In February 2007, the municipal government of Sisak sued the refinery, requiring compensation 1.8 million USD, for emitting air pollution putting under the risk the health of the local population, as well as lowering the market value of the 200 municipality apartments. The local authority’s action had been supported by citizens and civil organisation, such as the Association of Cancer Patients of Sisak, which organised protest as well as filed the lawsuit against the government -owner of the mayor share of the refinery. In January 2012, the municipal government lawsuit against INA was rejected. The City of Sisak could not appeal the decision due to the lack of finances. The same happened with the lawsuit filed by the Association, as it did not count with the sufficient money to pay costs of a scientific study that would demonstrate relationship between cancer diseases occurrence and pollution from the refinery. In September 2014, there was speculation in media that Hungarian Company MOL, one of the owners of INA, planned to sell the refinery to Russian investors that would result in its closure, due to the high operational cost and low national and regional demand for oil products. However, the Croatian partner claimed that the financial losses were caused by the fact that MOL did not modernize the refinery as it was planned. Around 800 workers of the refinery are strongly opposing the refinery closure. The refinery started working again in December 2014 after few months of deadlock and regular outage.  In 2015 the refinery was working with lower capacity, while 72 people were fired which provoked workers protests supported by the mayor of Sisak. The case on management rights in INA led to the international arbitration at the UN Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) between the Croatia and Hungarian MOL. According to information from May 2016, the Croatian government will step out of the arbitration due to large compensation costs in case of losing the case, and instead promotes reaching a political agreement with MOL. The workers continue their fight for INA as one of the crucial companies for Croatian economy.  </td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Basic Data</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Name</td><td>Pollution from oil refinery in Sisak, Croatia </td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Country</td><td><a href="/country/croatia">Croatia</a></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Province</td><td>Sisak-Moslavina County</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Site</td><td>Sisak</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Accuracy of Location</td><td>HIGH local level</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Source of Conflict</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Type of Conflict (1st level)</td><td>Fossil Fuels and Climate Justice/Energy</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Type of Conflict (2nd level)</td><td>Oil and gas refining</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Specific Commodities</td><td><a href='/commodity/crude-oil'>Crude oil</a></td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Project Details and Actors</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Project Details</td><td class="columns">Annual capacity of the refinery: 2.2 million tons</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Project Area (in hectares)</td><td>100</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Type of Population</td><td>Urban</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Potential Affected Population</td><td>10,000</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Start Date</td><td>05/02/2007</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Company Names or State Enterprises</td><td><a href='/company/ina-industrija-nafte-dd'>INA-Industrija Nafte d.d. <small>(INA)</small></a> from <a href='/country-of-company/croatia'><small>Croatia</small></a> - <small>The polluter</small><br /><a href='/company/hungarian-oil-and-gas-company-mol'>Hungarian oil and gas company MOL <small>(MOL)</small></a> from <a href='/country-of-company/hungary'><small>Hungary</small></a> - <small>The largest shareholder of INA</small></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Relevant government actors</td><td>Croatian Government; The Municipality of Sisak; The Ministry of Health of the Republic of Croatia; The Ministry of Environmental and Nature Protection of the Republic of Croatia</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Environmental justice organisations and other supporters</td><td>Association of Cancer Patients of Sisak; Sisacka eko akcija http://www.sea.hr; Sisak municipal government http://www.sisak.hr; STOŽER ZA OBRANU RAFINERIJE NAFTE SISAK I OČUVANJE RADNIH MJESTA http://stozer-rns.weebly.com/</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">The Conflict and the Mobilization</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)</td><td>MEDIUM (street protests, visible mobilization)</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">When did the mobilization begin</td><td>Mobilization for reparations once impacts have been felt</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Groups Mobilizing</td><td>Industrial workers<br /> Local ejos<br /> Local government/political parties<br /> Neighbours/citizens/communities<br /> Social movements<br /> Trade unions<br /> Local scientists/professionals</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Forms of Mobilization</td><td>Community-based participative research (popular epidemiology studies, etc..)<br /> Creation of alternative reports/knowledge<br /> Development of a network/collective action<br /> Involvement of national and international NGOs<br /> Lawsuits, court cases, judicial activism<br /> Media based activism/alternative media<br /> Official complaint letters and petitions<br /> Public campaigns<br /> Street protest/marches</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Impacts</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Environmental Impacts</td><td><strong>Visible: </strong>Air pollution, Global warming, Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation<br /><strong>Potential: </strong>Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Soil contamination, Fires, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Health Impacts</td><td><strong>Visible: </strong>Occupational disease and accidents, Deaths, Other environmental related diseases, Exposure to unknown or uncertain complex risks (radiation, etc…)<br /><strong>Potential: </strong>Mental problems including stress, depression and suicide, Infectious diseases, Accidents, Other Health impacts</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Other</td><td>Breast cancer in women and lung cancer in men<br/><br/>Miscarriage and sterility <br/><br/>According to health study from 2007, it is impossible to single out the pollution from refinery from other pollution sources in Sisak. </td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Socio-economic Impacts</td><td><strong>Visible: </strong>Loss of landscape/sense of place, Lack of work security, labour absenteeism, firings, unemployment<br /><strong>Potential: </strong>Loss of livelihood</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Outcome</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Project Status</td><td>In operation</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Pathways for conflict outcome / response</td><td>Court decision (failure for environmental justice)<br /> Court decision (undecided)<br /> Closure of refinery; Internatinal arbitration</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Development of Alternatives</td><td>The local authority required 1.8 million USD for compensation from the Croatian state, while the Association of Cancer Patients of Sisak sued the refinery for endangering public health. One of the mayor owners of the refinery, Hungarian company MOL, announced possible closure of the refinery. The refinery workers oppose this decision and demand from the government to protect their rights, modernize the refinery, and increase production and the number of employees.</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Do you consider this as a success?</td><td>No</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Why? Explain briefly.</td><td>In January 2012 a court reject the municipal government suit against INA, while the City of Sisak did not have money to appeal the decision, similarly the lawsuit by the Association of Cancer Patients of Sisak faced high cost of conducting a health impact study. The refinery has not been modernized but instead there are plans to close it and transfer production in Hungary in order to take over the oil products market of the oil products market of South-East Europe.</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Sources and Materials</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">References</td><td><table><tr><td><p> Robert Uberman and Saša Žiković, 2014. OWNERSHIP OF REFINERY BUSINESS IN CROATIA AND POLAND AS A FACTOR IMPACTING NATIONAL ENERGY SECURITY, Journal of Security and Sustainability Issues, 2014 Volume 4(2): 101–121<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:kI-2SrWqoncJ:www.lka.lt/download/24240/journal%2520of%2520security%2520and%2520sustainability%2520issues%2520nr4_%25202_1.pdf+&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=rs" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> STUDIJA PROCJENE MOGUĆEG UTJECAJA EKOLOŠKIH ČIMBENIKA NA ZDRAVSTVENO STANJE STANOVNIŠTVA SISAČKO-MOSLAVAČKE ŽUPANIJE<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.smz.hr/images/stories/okolis/ekcim08.pdf" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Links</td><td><table><tr><td><p> Croatian oil company sued for endangering public health<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.setimes.com/cocoon/setimes/xhtml/en_GB/features/setimes/features/2007/03/27/feature-03" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> PREVELIKO ZAGAĐENJE Propala tužba Siska protiv INE<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.slobodnadalmacija.hr/Hrvatska/tabid/66/articleType/ArticleView/articleId/162052/Default.aspx" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Grad Sisak odustaje od tužbe protiv INE zbog zagađenja<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.vecernji.hr/sredisnja-hrvatska/grad-sisak-odustaje-od-tuzbe-protiv-ine-zbog-zagadjenja-369109" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Biti ili ne biti sisačke rafinerije<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.slobodnaevropa.org/content/biti-ili-ne-biti-sisacke-rafinerije/26631146.html" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> MOL: Ne postoji čarobni štapić koji bi spasio rafineriju Sisak<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.vecernji.hr/sredisnja-hrvatska/mol-ne-postoji-carobni-stapic-koji-bi-spasio-rafineriju-sisak-978384" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Various links on the case of refinary Sisak<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.energetika-net.com/pretrazivanje?article=Rafinerija%20nafte%20Rijeka&commit=Pretraga&only_tags=1" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Pejnović u Pressingu: U INA-i su počinjena dva "zločina"<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://hr.n1info.com/a16822/Vijesti/Pejnovic-U-INA-i-su-pocinjena-dva-zlocina.html" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Zašto Washington sprečava kupnju dionica INE od strane ruskog Gazproma?<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://hr.rbth.com/economics/2014/12/08/zasto_washington_sprjecava_kupnju_dionica_ine_od_strane_ruskog_gazp_31665.html" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Various links in Press Report<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.press-report-hr.eu/baumax-varazdin-zatvaranje" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Arbitraža oko Ine nacionalni je interes iza kojega moramo svi stati<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.vecernji.hr/hrvatska/arbitraza-oko-ine-nacionalni-je-interes-iza-kojega-moramo-svi-stati-1079069" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Predsjednik Radničkog vijeća Ine Predrag Sekulić javno pita svog šefa Aldotta: Uništavate li našu kompaniju namjerno?!<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.slobodnadalmacija.hr/novosti/hrvatska/clanak/id/273775/predsjednik-radnickog-vijeca-ine-predrag-sekulic-javno-pita-svog-sefa-aldotta-unistavate-li-nasu-kompaniju-namjerno" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> HDZ za povlačenje iz arbitraže i politički dogovor s MOL-om<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.vecernji.hr/hrvatska/hdz-za-povlacenje-iz-arbitraze-i-politicki-dogovor-s-mol-om-1078613" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> 'Mol se mora ponašati u maniri dobrog vlasnika, a ne suprotno interesima države, INA-e i Siska'<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.vecernji.hr/hrvatska/gradonacelnica-mol-se-mora-oceti-ponasati-u-maniri-dobrog-vlasnika-a-ne-suprotno-interesima-drzave-ina-e-i-siska-1043608" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Članovi Stožera za obranu rafinerije Sisak u Uredu Predsjednice<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://direktno.hr/en/2014/domovina/36904/%C4%8Clanovi-Sto%C5%BEera-za-obranu-rafinerije-Sisak-u-Uredu-Predsjednice.htm" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Darko Horvat: Tko će platiti troškove ako hrvatska strana izgubi arbitražu oko Ine?<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.vecernji.hr/hrvatska/darko-horvat-tko-ce-platiti-troskove-ako-hrvatska-strana-izgubi-arbitrazu-oko-ine-1082924" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Stožer za obranu sisačke Rafinerije: Povlačenje iz arbitraže oko Ine izdaja je nacionalnih interesa<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.vecernji.hr/hrvatska/stozer-za-obranu-sisacke-rafinerije-povlacenje-iz-arbitraze-oko-ine-izdaja-je-nacionalnih-interesa-1083104" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Stožer za obranu Rafinerije Sisak: Otpuštanjem 72 radnika Rafinerija se zatvara na mala vrata<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.index.hr/vijesti/clanak/stozer-za-obranu-rafinerije-sisak-otpustanjem-72-radnika-rafinerija-se-zatvara-na-mala-vrata/860451.aspx" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Ina provodi organizacijske promjene u sisačkoj Rafineriji radi poboljšanja poslovanja<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://dnevnik.hr/vijesti/hrvatska/ina-provodi-organizacijske-promjene-u-sisackoj-rafineriji-radi-poboljsanja-poslovanja---418837.html" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Ništa neće biti dok radnici ne zauzmu rafineriju<br/><a class="refanch small" href="https://www.radnicki.org/nista-nece-biti-dok-radnici-ne-zauzmu-rafineriju/" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Media Links</td><td><table><tr><td><p> Protest protiv zatvaranja sisačke Rafinerije<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://balkans.aljazeera.net/vijesti/protest-protiv-zatvaranja-sisacke-rafinerije" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Spontani prosvjed zbog 72 otkaza u Rafineriji nafte Sisak, radnici prozvali i političare<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://dnevnik.hr/vijesti/hrvatska/spontani-prosvjed-zbog-72-otkaza-u-rafineriji-nafte-sisak-radnici-prozvali-i-politicare---419277.html" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Vlast uvjerava: Sisak ne ostaje bez rafinerije!<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://hr.n1info.com/a77200/Vijesti/Dok-se-gasi-proizvodnja-u-rafineriji-vlast-uvjerava-Sisak-ne-ostaje-bez-nje.html" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Other Documents</td><td><table><tr><td><p><strong>Rafinery in Sisak</strong> The pollution from the refinery in Sisak<br/><a class="refanch small" href="https://file.ejatlas.org/docs/1._rafinerija-sisak.jpg" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p><strong>Workers protest against the refinery closure</strong> Refinery in Sisak could be closed in 2015 leaving around 800 workers without job<br/><a class="refanch small" href="https://file.ejatlas.org/docs/sisak-rafinerija-protesti-ajb-promo.jpg" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr></table></td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Meta Information</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Contributor</td><td>Jovanka Spiric, Universitat Autónoma de Barcelona, vankajo(at)gmail.com</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Last update</td><td>25/05/2016</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div>
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