Plans by Bosnia and Herzegovina to push forward with ill-conceived Tuzla 7 coal-fired thermal power plant project received a surprising boost this week with the announcement of financing for the project being made available by banking consortium led by Slovenia’s NLB Bank (1).
The news earned the two countries today the sarcastic title of “Fossils of the day”, awarded daily by Climate Action Network (CAN), a leading network of NGOs from around the world working on climate change, to countries obstructing progress in urgent climate action during the ongoing COP25 climate negotiations in Madrid, Spain.
NLB Banka, Italy’s Intesa Sanpaolo and Russia’s Sberbank form the consortium which placed the sole bid for lending EUR 74 million to finance 15% of Tuzla 7 coal plant. The remaining 85 percent or EUR 614 million is to be financed by a separate loan from the China Exim Bank, which is currently under a dispute settlement procedure for violating state aid rules under the Energy Community Treaty (2) that integrates the energy markets of the EU and its neighbours.
“Involvement of the NLB Bank, also means involvement of the Government of Slovenia, as well as the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, as they are shareholders of the NLB Bank (3). No public money should support any new coal projects. Tuzlaks need to breathe a sigh of relief, not new air pollution, which last year alone was estimated to have led to 136 premature deaths in the city (4)” said Viktor Berishaj, Southeast Europe Climate and Energy Policy Coordinator at CAN Europe.“
Stevan Vujasinovć, Communications Coordinator for Southeast Europe, CAN Europe, Mob +381 63 390 218, firstname.lastname@example.org
Climate Action Network (CAN) Europe is Europe’s leading NGO coalition fighting dangerous climate change. With over 160 member organisations from 35 European countries, representing over 1.700 NGOs and more than 47 million citizens, CAN Europe promotes sustainable climate, energy and development policies throughout Europe.