|GP: Overview of Transport & Environmentally Sustainable Transport, Public Transport Company "GRAS" - Bosnia & Herzegovina|
1. Introduction - Public Transport Company "GRAS"
The public transport company "GRAS" has been transporting passengers since 1885, when the first horse-pulled tram in Europe had provoked amazement and doubtness of people of Sarajevo. Ten years later first electrical tram in Austro-Hungarian monarchy was introduced. Today this company has four forms of mass passenger transportation: tram, trolley bus, bus and mini-bus transportation. Besides these four forms of transportation, GRAS also owns an angled elevator and devastated cable railway to nearby mountain Trebevic. The above listed forms of transportation function through total of 387 transportation units. The unfortunate war circumstances in Bosnia and Herzegovina have led to reduction of transportation volume. Before the war 487 transportation units were serving the above mentioned four forms of transportation; during the war most of the transportation units were destroyed.
2. Description of the environmental problem specially caused by traffic pollution in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina has become an independent country in 1992. From 1945 until its independence Bosnia and Herzegovina was a part of Yugoslavia, as one of six republics. At that time, Bosnia and Herzegovina was a center of heavy industry such as electrical power plants and steel plant, which at the same time represented the biggest air polluters. Due to this fact, the industrially most developed cities of Bosnia and Herzegovina were also mostly polluted cities. Due to war circumstances in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the air pollution issue has been ignored and even today, not enough attention is being paid to it. When talking about the air pollution, special attention needs to be paid to effects of motor vehicles on air pollution. Only the Mechanical Faculty in Sarajevo has done significant research on effects of motor vehicles on emission polluters in urban areas.
2.1 Environmental trends and conditions associated with transport sector (since last 10 years)
During the period 1992-1995 Bosnia and Herzegovina was a country in war. Due to this fact we cannot in our analysis only rely on the last 10 years and we need to take into consideration certain elements, which have existed over the period which is longer then 10 years.
Due to lack of qualitative data on other urban areas, the research has been done only in the area of the city of Sarajevo. This data can be used as representational, since during the last quarter of the past century, Sarajevo represented one of the most polluted cities along with its well-known fogs. Just territory of Sarajevo alone has 100,000 vehicles, which represents 25 % of the entire motor pool of Federation of B&H.
An interesting fact is that the calculation of emission of exhaust gases and continuous measurement of CO2, which has been carried out during the period 04.20.2003. ÷ 06.20.2003. has led to almost identical results, which further proves the correctness of performed calculations.
2.2 Driving forces/causes of such environmental problems in transport sector
If we limit ourselves to area of the city of Sarajevo, where the research of this type has been only done, we could say that a big problem in ecological sense represents the average age of vehicles, which are used in the city. According to available data, the total of 60,000 vehicles in Sarajevo are older then 10 years. In 2002, the average age of a vehicle was 13.02 years.
A detailed summary of the age structure of the motor pool in Sarajevo in 2003 is given in table 2 of the downloadable version of this report.
Such catastrophic motor pool situation was also partially caused by the post-war politics of the country, which enabled the citizens to import used vehicles without any age restrictions. Importing privileges for such vehicles led to importation of large number of very old vehicles from the EU countries, which were available at very low costs.
2.3 Existing policy initiatives/measures at different level (Govt., NGOs, etc.)
The current country policy is limiting the importation of vehicles to vehicles younger then 7 years, freight vehicles and buses younger then 10 years. However, there was an omission made in this policy as well, since in most municipalities citizens are paying 10 % tax on importation of used vehicles, and 20 % tax for buying new vehicles. This is not logical since under this policy citizens are encouraged to buy old vehicles, which even further worsens the ecological situation. If the tax matter were turned around, more buyers would decide to buy new vehicles, which would contribute to rejuvenation of the motor pool and improvement of the ecological situation in the country.
The Mechanical Faculty in Sarajevo is the only one conducting the research on volume of exhaust gases caused by their emission from vehicles. Dynamics of improvement of the ecological situation in which we live depends on readiness of the government to rely on results of this research and to include the recommendations for ecological future into law regulation.
2.4 Policy/knowledge/information gap in relation to environment and the transport sector
It is quite apparent that there are significant problems in the area of environment protection in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The current country politics are trying to reconcile the economic situation of the country with the legal regulations, which would further enable improvement of the ecological situation, especially in urban communities.
Utilization of new alternative fuels in public transportation vehicles and small passenger motor vehicles is only possible by ensuring existence of the necessary infrastructure.
3. Description of the present situation of transport infrastructure in Bosnia and Herzegovina
The transport infrastructure of Bosnia and Herzegovina can be divided into road, railway, air and water transportation. Underdevelopment represents a common characteristic for all these forms of transportation. Already poorly developed network of transport infrastructure in Bosnia and Herzegovina was even more damaged during the past war.
3.1 Present situation of traffic action
The road infrastructure is divided into state, regional and local roads. Over 2,000 km of state roads were partially or fully destroyed during the war. Currently Bosnia and Herzegovina has the total of 3,788 km of state roads. Out of this number 1,764 km of state roads are located with Republic Srpska and 2,024 km with Federation. The network of regional roads contains 2,842 km, 2,157 km in Republic Srpska and 2,724 km in Federation.
3.2 Difficulties/challenges in promoting environmental-friendly transportation/ infrastructures
Currently, Bosnia and Herzegovina is facing great difficulties in terms of poor infrastructure whose reconstruction is too slow and in terms of poor age structure of the existing motor pool.
4. Long/Short-term Strategies on urban environment and transportation
Typical example of activities which are undertaken with a final goal of improving the ecological situation in the country is in the city of Sarajevo, in which authorities are undertaking even though slowly certain actions on improving the ecological situation. Such activities depend on size of invested financial assets and it is well know that finding financial assets for this area in post-war situation is extremely difficult. However, there are certain activities that are being undertaken and they are presented further down in the text.
4.1 Overall strategy of Bosnia and Herzegovina
The trend of introducing cleaner forms of transport in pubic transportation of passengers is present in urban communities. Those urban communities are trying to introduce into public transportation of passengers vehicles, which use compressed natural gas. This requires large investments and our country is able to undertake such initiatives with the help of developed countries. Certain cooperation with EU countries has been established on this issue, and JICA has also so far invested significant financial assets in the area of transportation and transportation infrastructure.
4.2 How KJKP "GRAS" is contributing towards achieving/meeting the overall national strategy
Public transport company "GRAS" is preparing for adjustment of its motor pool to the European standards. Most of its development plans are based on utilization of ecologically clean vehicles, trams and trolleybuses. There are also plans to change the existing motor pool of buses and minibuses with vehicles, which will meet the world standards on emission of harmful polluters in accordance with the EURO 3 and EURO 4 norms. It is anticipated that expansion of tram and trolleybus network lines in near future will lead to reduction of bus utilization in public transportation, which would lead to reduction of emission of harmful polluters.