Presentation of the draft Project Document 'Integrating climate change and reducing the risk of flooding in the Vrbas River basin'

23 Jul 2014

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A draft Project Document "'Integrating climate change and reducing the risk of flooding in the Vrbas River basin" was presented 7/23/2014. in Banja Luka, under the auspices of the United Nations Development Programme. The event was attended by: Srebrenka Golić, Minister of Spatial Planning, Civil Engineering and Ecology of Republic of Srpska, the mayors and representatives of 13 municipalities in the RS and FBiH belonging regions of Vrbas River basin, representatives of the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Relations of BiH, Federal Ministry of Environment and Tourism, and numerous local experts in various fields.

"A key advantage of the future project is, it would be first time on the territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and even the region, that integrating climate change in water management, regarding flood protection could be done. The project would have a very strong infrastructure component, but nevertheless crucial thing would be development of a hydrological model for the Vrbas River basin, which includes climate change. ' Sanjin Avdic, Head of UNDP Energy and Environment Sector, pointed it out.

The project should consist of three components. The first two components of the project relate to the creation of a legal basis, which would integrate climate change and flood risk in agriculture, water management and spatial planning sectors, and the transfer of technology and institutions capacity-building in the field of hydro-meteorological monitoring, hydro-dynamic modeling and climate change prediction, and creating a database for analysis of Hydro-meteorological and other hazardous occurrences and resulting damages.

Minister Golić pointed out: "The third and most important component that would include about 65% implies investment at the local level, whose implementation will directly improve the living conditions of the most vulnerable groups of the population in the catchment area of the Vrbas River basin, through construction investment, and non-structural measures such as reconnection of floodplain, meander restoration, establishment of riverbed double effect, establishment of early warning systems etc. "

Minister Golic also emphasized that the Ministry of Spatial Planning, Civil Engineering and Ecology of Republic of Srpska, as a contact institution by BiH towards the United Nations Convention for Climate Change, has recognized the risk and society and economies sensibility in relation to climate change, and initiated the creation of Adapting Strategies to climate change and low emission development.

Preparation of Action Plan on the basis of the Strategy is in progress, and the decision was made to begin the preparation of the third National Climate Change report.