Yesterday, the Secretariat sent warning letters to Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo*, North Macedonia and Serbia to express concerns about the implementation of their National Emission Reduction Plans (NERPs). NERPs are an instrument to comply with the Large Combustion Plants Directive and as such, they are to provide for emission reductions to the levels that would have been achieved by applying the Directive’s emission limit values for the group of plants covered by their scope. The Directive establishes emission limit values for three pollutants: sulphur dioxide, nitrogen oxides and dust, all of which have a major impact on air quality, a long-lasting problem for the Western Balkans.
All over the region, the energy sector is one of the main contributors to air pollution, which in turn has very high health and environmental costs and is responsible for high numbers of premature deaths. According to the Secretariat’s estimates by implementing the standards of the Large Combustion Plants and Industrial Emissions Directives, Contracting Parties will be able to achieve a cost-benefit ratio of 1 to 16-17.
* This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo declaration of independence.