Kick-off Meeting for the Preparation of the Project “Enhanced Cross-Sectoral Land Management Through Land use Pressure Reduction and Planning”
The First Stakeholders meeting for the preparation of the project Enhanced Cross-Sectoral Land Management through Land Use Pressure Reduction and Planning was held on Thursday July 17, 2014, in Hotel Moskva, Belgrade. The meeting was organized by the Ministry of Agriculture and Environmental Protection of the Republic of Serbia, Serbian Environmental Protection Agency and
United Nations Environment Programme. The meeting gathered 56 stakeholders, with media coverage by one TV station and various news agencies and online portals. The meeting was attended by government officials, representatives of public and scientific institutions, international and non-governmental organizations who exchanged information on completed and ongoing projects related to the improvement of land management in the Republic of Serbia.
The meeting was opened by the State Secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture and Environmental Protection, Ms Stana Božović, and the project was also addressed by the Director of the Serbian Environmental Protection Agency, Mr Filip Radović, project manager and representative of the Regional Office of the UN Environment for Europe, Mr Pierre Karlo Sandei, Mr Vladica Božić (Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry Environment) and Ms Dragana Vidojević (Serbian Environmental Protection Agency).
The basis for the project design and implementation is a development of the inventory of contaminated sites, which currently lists 384 sites, of which 2% has been remediated. During the meeting it was noted that municipal waste landfills and oil extraction and refining processes prevail among the contamination sources. The issue of land degradation increased after the May flooding event in Serbia with 72% of the total agricultural damages falling under degradation of land and loss of soil productivity.
The project’s main goal is to alleviate the pressure on soil as a natural resource from competitive soil uses, through preventing further soil degradation and promoting soil remediation in Serbia. The project will develop instruments and mechanisms for integrated soil use and management, reinforce the institutional capacities and raise awareness on the integral and sustainable soil management.