Source: eKapija | Wednesday, 22.02.2012.| 15:57
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Bogatic as engine of regional development - Municipality in Macva to become high-technology center for renewable energy

Bogatic, which is known as a "red spot" on the map of geothermal waters in Serbia, may soon become the Regional Center for Renewable Sources of Energy. Construction of a power plant using biogas from agricultural waste as a fuel should kick off in this municipality early next year. The next phase in its development should be an investment in a regional high-technology center for renewable energy, modelled after the partner European center in Austria.

This municipality in Macva has already cooperated with Austria's town of Gussing in the implementation of IPA projects.

- At a conference in Belgrade, the mayor of Gussing, which is similar to Bogatic in size, told a story about how he and his associates had developed that town and its underdeveloped and isolated surroundings with plenty of economic and social problems into an economically stable region by changing the energy policy. Namely, by focusing on the improvement of energy efficiency in consumption and by starting using renewable sources of energy, this town has boosted its revenues by about EUR 13 million in only fifteen years and gained independence in terms of production and use of electrical and heating energy – Slobodan Savic, mayor of Bogatic, says in an interview with eKapija.

Partners from Austria have proposed to transfer their knowledge and technology to Bogatic because their town hosts the headquarters of the European Center for Renewable Energy. An idea of the management of Bogatic is to cooperate with the cross-border partner Bijeljina, which has very similar resources of geothermal energy, biomass and solar energy, in building a Regional Center for Renewable Energy Sources, which could very soon become an engine of the development of the entire region.

(Slobodan Savic)

- The most significant part of this project is the knowledge and technology transfer in the process of transferring experience of the European Center for Renewable Energy in Gussing to Bogatic and Bijeljina. The aim is to design a feasibility study for the construction of a biogas power plant, which would generate electricity and heat. In that case, appropriate crops, such as corn, cereal hay, silage, clover, etc., would be purchased from agricultural producers to make biogas that would be used to fuel aforementioned cogeneration plant, whose by-product would be a compost fraction that would be given for free to farmers to fertilize their crops - Savic explains.

The mayor hopes that this project will be approved, so they could send the first group of 20 agricultural producers to Austria as early as in September.

- Our partners would show the farmers from Bogatic how all that functions in practice. I believe that to be an important prerequisite for the implementation of new technologies in our municipality. Technology and knowlege would then be successively transferred to our municipality late this year.

S.O.

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