EU renovates Ramici landfill in Banjaluka, improves country’s capacity in solid waste management

The regional landfill in Ramici near Banja Luka whose recent renovation was financed by the European Union, was officially opened on 24 April 2017.  Worth EUR 3 million, this renovation is part of a National Programme for Bosnia and Herzegovina under IPA – Transition Assistance and Institution Building Component for the year 2010. Focusing on waste management issues, the project aims to contribute in reducing the risks to human health and environment, and improving availability, quality, environmental soundness and financial viability of solid waste management services in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Head of EU Delegation and EU Special Representative to BiH Ambassador Lars-Gunnar Wigemark, RS Minister for Spatial Planning, Civil Engineering and Ecology Srebrenka Golić, Mayor of Banja Luka Igor Radojičić, Director of the Public company responsible for the management of the Landfill Novo Grujic and World Bank representative Igor Palandzic welcomed media, representatives of different local and international institutions, project beneficiaries and stakeholders.

Speaking about the achievements of the project, Ambassador Wigemark underlined that this was not just an improvement of the environment and rehabilitation of a landfill, but was also way of providing jobs and that he would like to see more of these facilities in similar projects around BiH. “Across Europe, environment and in particular waste management is one of the fastest growing areas of the economy. Waste can actually be a source of wealth. Much of what has ended up on this landfill could have been recycled instead and provided jobs. We would like to do more, but for that to happen we do need a country-wide strategy in terms of environment”.

The regional landfill in Ramići will serve the City of Banja Luka and seven surrounding municipalities that have an estimated 400.000 citizens. The landfill is expected to receive and treat approximately 110,000 tons of waste per year.

Minister Golic underlined that Ramici landfill is the most modern landfill in RS and probably in whole BiH, built by European standards and that this could not have been finalised without the EU funds. “I use this opportunity to thank Ambassador Wigemark on behalf of the RS Ministry for Spatial Planning, Civil Engineering and Ecology and RS Government for all his support and wish to announce that the RS Ministry for Spatial Planning, Civil Engineering and Ecology has submitted to the RS National Assembly for approval the Strategy on Waste, aiming at improving this area in accordance with European standards”.

The activities implemented within this Project are: 1.Landfill rehabilitation, 2.Construction of sanitary cells for waste treatment in compliance with EU Standards; and 3. Construction of a gas collection system.  With the implementation of this project, the system for waste management disposal has improved which will help minimize the negative impact on human health and environment from the adverse effects of waste.

The landfill was rehabilitated under the project “Support to the solid waste sector in Bosnia and Herzegovina: Rehabilitation of the old landfill and expansion of the existing landfill in Banja Luka”, and was financed by the European Union through the Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA 2010), administered by the World Bank. The project started in July 2012 and was completed in July 2016.