Conceptualizing JUST Green Transition in the Western Balkan

Despite the looming threat of climate change and pollution, the process towards the Just Green Transition concept in the WBs is progressing at a very slow pace and little is done in regard to societal preparedness for JGT.

Therefore, the purpose of the Report on Western Balkans Just Green Transition Conceptualisation is to provide an overview of how Green Transition may be conceptualized in the Western Balkans, particularly with respect to the initial preparatory phase, the role of the various societal actors, their cooperation to achieve the ambition, and finally including the economic impacts (costs and benefits) that the transition will have on the society.

As a document it makes its first attempt in unravelling key theoretical concepts related to Just Green Transition, while providing at a same time a summary of Green Transition efforts in the WB to date, in the frame of the EU Green Deal and defines common key elements for the just and inclusive Green Transition of the WB. Additionally, it builds on two methodological processes undertaken in the frame of GreenFORCE: i) the mapping of policies and current initiatives in the WBs and ii) the co-design processes bringing together the discussion of various stakeholder’s on JGT in the region.

To deepen the discussion and further the efforts towards conceptualisation of JGT in WBs, five (5) research case study approaches are presented and introduced in the document.

The country specific research case studies are:

  • Albania case: Net-Zero transition for Post-Communist Urban Neighbourhoods in, Albania. The research addresses, through a combination of research instruments in the urban setting, the socio-economic benefits and implications of transiting toward “net-zero-emission building” (NZEB). The main objective of the research is to identify and assess ex-ante the benefits and costs of transiting to zero emission buildings in neighborhoods of pre-fabricated residential buildings (apartments, concrete pre-fabricated panels, built during 1970-1985) in Tirana, Albania. The overall objective of the research is to contribute to the preparedness of institutions and society in Albania on the implications and impacts of decarbonization for climate neutrality in the perspective of JGT.
  • North Macedonia case: Implications of Transition in the Energy Sector at the Regional Level, North Macedonia, will focus on the first pillar of the GAWB of climate action – decarbonization, especially on the aspect of just transition in the energy sector. It will deep dive in the just transition process of the still dependant coal-based energy production region and assess the costs and benefits though several possible scenarios.  The overall objective of the research is to contribute to the preparedness of institutions and society on the implications and impacts of just transition in the intended efforts toward decarbonization of the coal fuelled and dependant energy sector.
  • Serbia case: The effects of green transition to spatial planning policies- key study Kragujevac sustainable mobility strategy. Sustainable mobility provides an alternative paradigm investigating the complexity of the cities, and strengthening the links between land use and transport. Based on extensive research and public engagement, the research will present a new vision and a series of recommendations to guide the future of buses in the cities, on the example of the city of Kragujevac in the Republic of Serbia. The research will elaborate the strategic approach of potential introduction of eco-buses instead of the classic ones currently in force with the basic goal of increasing the number of the public city transport users, congestion decrease and green gas emission reduction. Also, the analysis will provide the best effects for increasing the share of public transportation in the total, changing the number of cars in the central area of the city and reducing pollution in these parts by using electric vehicles. Presented will be a pilot idea of passengers to use conventional buses to get to the edge of the central area of the city and then transfer to electric buses, which will distribute consumers to their desired destination in a well-distributed frequency of departures. The end purpose will be to give policies an impulse to (de)motivate the use of certain types of traffic (mobile and stationary), adapted to urban planning parameters, technical solutions, and basis for a gradual transition to a carbon-free public transport system in the City.
  • Montenegro case: Waste management sector transformation and its impact towards JGT, Montenegro. This research proposal aims to assess the potential of using pre-defined waste streams as a source for alternative fuel production in Podgorica and the central region of Montenegro as a means towards implementing the Green Agenda for WB. The research results should inform and contribute to increased awareness of Green Transition issues related to the waste management sector in Montenegro. In addition, the research will explore the potential for alternative fuel production to reduce dependability on fossil fuels, increase the competitively of Montenegrin businesses in international markets, reduce the carbon footprint through the substitution effect with alternative fuels and reduce the quantity of waste deposited in landfills.
  • Bosnia and Hercegovina case: Assessing local economic and employment impact of JGT, Bosnia and Herzegovina. The proposed research aims at analysing the possible impact of future coal mine closure on coal sector workers as well as workers in other economic sectors linked to the coal value chain. The analysis will present a labour market perspective on the transition, focusing on labour market and welfare implications of the coal mine closures in the BiH labour market context, and especially within local labour markets. The main objective of this research is to produce a policy relevant analysis of the overall and local labour market impact of decarbonization in BiH. The research is expected to inform the design of options for mitigating social and labour impacts associated with the anticipated closure of coal mines.

Read the full report here.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *