Climate Change in Bosnia and Herzegovina

Climate changes in Bosnia and Herzegovina are indeed visible, studies show that in the period from 1961 up until 2010 the temperature rose 1˚ Celsius in average across the territory of BiH. [1] The climate in Bosnia in Herzegovina has expressed a lot of variables in the 21st century , to second that we have examples of draught years ,since the year 2000, which have intensified (years : 2000 , 2003 , 2007 , 2011 and 2012 ) , followed by heavy rainfalls . These extremes have turned up in the period since the year 1981, and have intensified since the turn of the century, meaning that we have intensively dry periods followed by the opposite, heavy rainfall. This has effects on the agriculture of the state, and on the economy itself.

According to climate models, the main seasonal temperature changes for the period 2001- 2030 are expected to range from +0.8°C to +1.0°C above previous average temperatures. Winters are predicted to become warmer (from 0.5°C to 0.8°C), while the biggest changes will be during the months of June, July and August, with predicted changes of +1.4°C in the north and +1.1°C in southern areas. Precipitation is predicted to decrease by 10% in the west of the country and increase by 5% in the east. 

Although we have proof that climate change is indeed happening , not a lot has changed in the residents minds , and , sadly , not a lot is being done to even acknowledge the climate change.
Due to the war that happened during the disintegration of the former republic of Yugoslavia , the economy has been left crippled , and beside feeding its family , the average citizen does not think about anything else. There is this established mindset that climate change is happening, but we have “bigger” problems to worry about, like we do, and that the bigger and more developed countries should tackle this problem. This is the classic example of “someone else is going to do it”.

The public perception of climate change is very weak. The example is that there haven’t been any surveys done addressing this topic. So we don’t exactly have a view into the opinion of the general public, but the sole fact that there hasn’t been any work done regarding this topic is an indicator of the perception of these changes. Only 1 survey in the region (neighboring Croatia) is available to the general public. It’s a work of an amateur (, and in the video the general opinion that the climate change is indeed happening but the reasons behind it are usually in artificial control of the climate itself (regarding the HAARP system) , and are overestimated.

The general public is uninformed about the changes happening around them and sadly they choose to be ignorant regarding them. On the other hand, the government has recognized these problems, alongside many NGOs, and there has been work done regarding the subject.

In Bosnia and Herzegovina there are 725 NGOs with its primary focus being preservation of nature and education about environmental effects. These NGOs range from International foundations such as UNDP (United Nations Development Program), UNEP (United Nations Environment Programm), UNESCO (United Nations Educational Scientific Cultural Organization), FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization)  to simple associations such as “Eko tim” and “Centar za životnu sredinu”, alongside 722 other minor organizations.

Bosnia and Herzegovina has ratified 3 main UN conventions about environment:

  1. Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) year 2002
  2. UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC) year 2000
  3. The UNs Convention to combat Desertification in those countries experiencing serious drought and/or desertification (UNCCD) year 2002

There have also been a lot of changes regarding the current law in B&H which follow the current trends in the European Union regulations , and besides that implementing those changes in the current economy , as we can see on the examples of reconstruction and modernization of local coal power plants .It is also important to mention that B&H has recorded the highest increase in consumption of renewable energy of 1.32% when compared to the other Western Balkan countries in the period 1995 – 2008 ,  and it is believed that until the year of 2025 Bosnia and Herzegovina will become a sustainable and progressive green economy[2].  There are also a lot of active projects regarding the current ecological state in our country. But in the end besides this the industry sector overall is characterized by low productivity and poor competition resulting in low environmental awareness[3].

Although there is a lot happening currently about environmental awareness and combating the current climate changes the situation is still alarming at best. Considering the weak public perception about climate change and the overall awareness of the current government we still have a lot of work to do and a lot of obstacles to overcome. Main problems are definitely low education in this field and low activity from the government officials which are directly responsible for implementing changes regarding the current climate preservation.

[1] Climate Change Adaptation and Low Emission Development Strategy for Bosnia&Herzegovina ,

[2] UNDP NAP (National Adaptation Plan) 2013.

[3] UNDP “State of environment report”, 2012.

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