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Friday, August 27, 2010
Works commence on the Ulog HPP

The works on the Ulog HPP project commenced today with the building of a system of access roads in Ulog. The value of the EFT Group investment is in the region of EUR 65 million and the project is expected to be completed by the end of 2015. 

“The Ulog HPP will consist of two units with total capacity of 35 MW. The project also envisages the building of an 110kV transmission line, as well as 7.2 km of access roads”, said Svetomir Prokic, EFT’s engineer in charge of the project. 

The Ulog HPP will produce around 80 GWh annually. The plant will not only function in line with the relevant environmental laws, but will set new standards in environmental protection for energy projects of its kind in Bosnia and Herzegovina. 

“All energy producing hydro units have an impact on rivers where they are built. We need new sources of energy, so our task is to ensure that in building them we minimise their negative impact on the surrounding area and reduce it to an acceptable level. The public should recognise this and differentiate investors who strive to achieve those goals from those who do not. EFT is developing all its energy projects in Bosnia and Herzegovina not only in line with the local environmental regulation, but also in line with the relevant EU directives. The Ulog plant will produce energy in run- of-the- river mode and will not adversely affect the downstream flow” said Prokic. 

The Faculty of Agricultural studies, University of Sarajevo has conducted a full ichthyology survey and has projected the impact of the Ulog HPP project on the fish in Neretva river. Professor Samir Muhamedagic said that the waterfall in Ljusici presents a natural barrier to migration of Neretva pike perch, and that the Ulog dam will not adversely affect the state of its population further downstream. Professor Muhamedagic also pointed out that the current state of the river fish population in the upper Neretva is in a very worrying state, which is a result of lack of preservation, detrimental fishing practice and general lack of care for many years. “The program of increasing pike perch population in the upper Neretva stream to which EFT has obliged itself will improve and rectify this, and could provide the local population with a new mean of generating income”. 

Vuk Hamovic, the Chairman of the EFT Group said that he hoped institutions from Republika Srpska and the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina will cooperate closely on this and other river Neretva projects, as this was in direct interest of the whole of Bosnia and Herzegovina. 

“The Ulog HPP and the plants at Bjelimici and Glavaticevo, which are planned further downstream, should be developed in close coordination, as a single system. In this way, all three plants will be more profitable, while at the same time ensuring the highest level of protection for the river Neretva. EFT is certainly ready to collaborate closely with the relevant institutions and stakeholders in both entities”, said Hamovic.

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