European Union countries are rushing to develop and implement recommendations and mandatory measures that would limit the consumption of electricity and thermal energy and encourage its responsible use. Lights are off in many facilities. While Europe is afraid of shortages, in BiH there is currently only fear of more expensive energy sources and recommendations for a more rational use of electricity. Do we have a savings plan?
The lights of the Eiffel Tower will be dimmed, the pyramids of the Parisian Louvre will go out two hours earlier than usual. The implementation of what European citizens have been talking about all summer is now taking shape. Many countries, fearing an energy crisis, limit the heating temperature of public places to a maximum of 19 degrees, limit the lighting of public monuments, the lighting of illuminated advertisements, the lighting of streets and shop windows. Citizens and the economy are invited to save.
“Previously, we paid 160 euros per month for heating and hot water. But now it goes to 268 euros, which means we have to pay 108 euros more every month,” says Barbara from Berlin.
“The turnover of this company is growing, but despite this, if we maintain production, our energy costs are expensive. This can represent up to 40% of our turnover, which is unsustainable”, explains José Luis Lacuna, owner of the glass processing company.
Contrary to the European Union, in BiH for the moment only recommendations for a rational use of energy. Earlier this month, the government of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina called on citizens and businesses to save. Like the countries of the Union, public establishments have been invited to develop savings plans. However, public institutions in Bosnia and Herzegovina have not yet adopted the latest European practice, which does not mean that they will not.
“At the very last course, we discussed the issue of switching off outdoor lighting and came to the conclusion that we will look at the practices and experience of the region and Europe”, says Meliha Redžić , head of the town hall.
“It is possible that something like this will happen here too. There are no big savings. I think the conscience is more affected. The biggest consumer of electricity in Banja Luka is public lighting. More than two million BAM represent the costs of paying for electricity and for several years we have been continuously working to reduce consumption by applying energy efficiency measures,” emphasizes Boriša Mandić from the Department of Municipal Affairs of the City of Banjaluka .
Bills and prices are currently at the top of the priorities of BiH citizens, so saving is the only option.
“I always save. How? – I have a solar collector, a steam heater, everything works for me, and hot water and I cook with gas”;
“As much as possible, because we should try to help as much as possible individually. In what way? – When the electricity is cheap, we turn off the light, we only turn on the boiler sometimes when necessary”;
“It was worse, during the war we had nothing, neither water nor electricity, so we got by, there was gas, we extracted it from the ground”;
“The rational use of energy, changing the very habits of heating the rooms to the appropriate temperature that we use, also using electrical appliances in the periods when we need them, and those who have the possibility of use electricity at a cheap rate, in winter from 1-4 o’clock or in the evening from 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 a.m. and so we try to reduce our energy needs and thus stay at the level of the bill for the year last or slightly higher,” says energy expert Nihad Harbaš.
National electricity companies assure that there will be no increase in electricity prices, at least not before the end of the year, and that the electricity system is stable. But they say electricity cannot be an alternative to heating.
“Our blocks are old blocks and they have approximately a degree of use in the summer period of around 30-32%, in the winter period a little more and when we convert it into tonnes, this means that out of 1000 t of coal, we convert 300 t into electricity, 700 t are lost and it is technically completely unjustified to give these 300 t of electricity back to heating”, says the director of Elektroprivreda BiH, Admir Andelija.
Winter is fast approaching and new gasoline prices are pending. Electricity prices are certain until the end of the year, but not from the next, experts say, and they repeat, saving has no alternative.