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INSTITUTIONAL ASPECTS OF SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT IN CROATIA


Click here to go to these sections: Integrated Decision-Making Major Groups Science Information International Law

INTEGRATED DECISION-MAKING

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies    

A National Sustainable Development Coordination Mechanism has not been established, but it is a current priority of the Government to establish a Ministry of Environment. According to the state administrative structure, the State Directorate for Environment is in charge of the activities related to general environmental policy within the context of sustainable development. The Croatian Parliament, the Government, the Parliamentary Board for Physical Planning and Environment and other Governmental bodies within their respective domains, as well as the units of local government and self-government, are all responsible for decision-making for sustainable development in the country.

Among those most involved in this area are the Ministris of:  Foreign Affairs; Development and Reconstruction; Economy; Science and Technology; Culture; Agriculture and Forestry; Labour and Social Welfare, State Directorate for Water; Physical Planning, Building and Housing; and the State Bureau of Statistics.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

The conservation and use of natural and cultural wealth are decided upon by the Parliament of the Republic of Croatia and the people, in accordance with the Constitution and the legislature. The Republic ensures the right of a citizen to a healthy environment. Also by Constitution, the citizens, state, public and economic authorities and associations are bound, within their authorities and activities, to take special care of the protection of the human environment and natural health.

A good example of an integrative approach for economic development and environmental protection is the procedure of environmental impact assessment, implemented in Croatia since 1984. Consistent with the Law on Environmental Protection (1994), such an assessment ensures the realization of the preventive principle, through compliance and adjustment of planned intervention, construction, and other relevant activities. The EIA process involves both an assessment of environmental impact and a panel discussion in the area to be affected for purposes of evaluation.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

The strategic documents on development, elaborated in the Republic of Croatia during the past five-year period, take into account the integration of environment and development components, reflected, for example, in the 1996 Strategy on Physical Planning and the 1997 National Programme on Sustainable Island Development. The National Programme on Sustainable Development is being prepared by a working group of scientists, experts, representatives of ministries and other governmental bodies, coordinated by the Ministry of Development and Reconstruction.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

The Croatian Parliament is the citizens' representative body and the incumbent of the legislative authority. It consists of the Chamber of Representatives and the Chamber of Counties. The Croatian Government acts as the executive authority, and is constituted of the President, the Vice-Presidents, Ministers and other members.

Within the constitutionally-guaranteed right to local government and self-government, citizens decide on local needs and interests, especially concerning physical and urban planning, settlements planning and housing, municipal activities, and protection and improvement of the natural environment. The units of local self-government are cities and municipalities, or, for later territories, counties.

Programmes and Projects   

No information is available

Status   

No information is available

Challenges  

No information is available

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising   

No information is available

Information   

No information is available

Research and Technologies   

No information is available

Financing   

No information is available

Cooperation

Efforts in this area are furthered by international and regional cooperation, particularly in the context of the "Environment for Europe" Process, the Environmental Action Programme for Central and Eastern Europe Danube River Basin Environment Programme, the Mediterranean Action Plan, and numerous conventions, protocols and agreements to which Croatia is a party.

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This information was provided by the Government of Croatia to the 5th Session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: April 1997.

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For the Directorate for Environmental Protection, in Croatian, click here.
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MAJOR GROUPS

WOMEN

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies    

No information is available

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

The Government of the Republic of Croatia founded the Government's Commission for Equality, with the objective of creating a general National Policy for the Improvement of the Status of Women, consistent with the guidelines created by the Action Platform of the Fourth World Conference on Women. The Commission will cooperate with non-governmental organizations in the creation of this policy, and also receive full assistance from the European Council.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

No information is available

Programmes and Projects   

No information is available

Status   

The Government of the Republic of Croatia has one female Vice President, and two female ministers. Women represent 4.41% of the Parliament's Chamber of Counties, and 7.1% of the Parliament's Chamber of Representatives in 1997. Since 1994 there have been no changes in the gender composition of the Government, but the percentage of women in Parliament has slightly increased from 5.1 % in the Chamber of Representatives and 2.2 % in the Chamber of Counties.

There are no data on the percentage of women at the decision-making level in counties or districts.

Clearly one of the main tasks in the Republic of Croatia is increasing the number of women participating in political life.

Challenges  

No information is available

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising   

No information is available

Information   

No information is available

Research and Technologies   

No information is available

Financing   

No information is available

Cooperation

The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women was ratified on 8, October, 1991.

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This information was provided by the Government of Croatia to the 5th Session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: April 1997.

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CHILDREN AND YOUTH

No information is available.

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INDIGENOUS PEOPLE

No information is available.

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NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies

According to the list supplied by the State Directorate for Environment, there are 188 non-governmental organizations engaged in environmental and nature protection in the Republic of Croatia. Both the activities and the good intentions of NGOs would be of greater assistance if the status and organizational framework of NGOs could be determined on a long-term basis.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

Since 1990, NGOs have been registered according to the Law on Citizen's Associations and Social Organizations. The Ministry of Administration is responsible for developing the Law on Associations. Public criticism on the draft bill was based on the fact that its provisions and acts were not specific enough.

The Law on Environmental Protection (1994) relates to future regulations that should create a legislative framework for increased public involvement in environmental affairs. According to certain existing regulations, the public is supposed to be involved in some decision-making processes (Rule Book on Environmental Impact Assessment). There is no legislative obligation for the cooperation of governmental and non-governmental organizations or for the participation of NGOs in decision-making. However, there is cooperation in the environmental sphere, mostly limited to individual cases, and non-institutionalized.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

No information is available

Programmes and Projects   

No information is available

Status   

No information is available

Challenges  

No information is available

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising 

No information is available

Information 

No information is available

Research and Technologies   

No information is available

Financing   

The Ministry of Development and Reconstruction offers financial and other support to NGOs in environmental projects.

Cooperation  

No information is available

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This information was provided by the Government of Croatia to the 5th Session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: April 1997.

 

LOCAL AUTHORITIES

No information is available

 

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WORKERS AND UNIONS

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies  

No information is available

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations  

The government cannot estimate how many conventions will have been ratified by the year 2000, but the possibility of acceptance of a certain number of new ones is being discussed. In this process, an important role will be played by the Social Economic Council which is being established at the national level as a tripartite body.

The Republic of Croatia has amended all of its labour legislation, increasing the role of employees, even in work safety. The new Law on Work Safety anticipates the election of an employees' representative for work safety, with a wide range of authority. In addition, all employees are bound by the law to perform their jobs with proper care, in accordance with the rules of work safety.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

No information is available

Programmes and Projects   

No information is available

Status   

No information is available

Challenges  

No information is available

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising   

No information is available

Information   

No information is available

Research and Technologies   

No information is available

Financing   

No information  is available

Cooperation  

The Republic of Croatia has ratified fifty-six conventions of the International Labour Organization, among which are all the so-called basic conventions or the conventions on basic human rights in the field of labour.

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This information was provided by the Government of Croatia to the 5th Session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: April 1998.

 

BUSINESS AND INDUSTRY

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies    

No information is available

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

In 1996, the first year of peace, some important initiatives were set in motion. The Croatian Business Council for Sustainable Development was established by a group of nineteen of Croatia's leading firms and companies. Various industrial and service areas are represented on the Council. The founding companies, along with other companies, accept the principles of the Business Charter on Sustainable Development and are gradually building them into their dealings.

Technical Committee 207 (TC) was launched within the State Bureau of Standardization and Metrology. Its domain is environmental management, encompassing a number of ISO 14000 standards. The representatives of some leading Croatian organizations partake in the work of the TC. They are interested in working there and in accepting standards, since some ten companies have started the preliminary activities for the implementation of an environmental management system, and some have already obtained pre-certification according to ISO 14000.  The number of products with an Environmentally friendly label has increased. An Environmental Label is awarded to manufacturers of consumer goods that have reduced adverse impacts of their products on the environment.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans     

No information is available

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

No information is available

Programmes and Projects   

No information is available

Status   

No information is available

Challenges  

No information is available

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising   

A range of education and public awareness activities have been organized by Croatian and international institutions, such as workshops, seminars, symposiums on environmental management systems, eco-efficiency implementation in business, and implementation of legal regulations. In addition, many industries inform their workers on environmental and sustainable development topics through their in-house journals.

Information   

No information is available

Research and Technologies   

A Cleaner Technologies Centre and Centre for the Transfer of Technologies, among others, were set up. The leading Croatian organizations and degree-granting educational institutions are involved here as well.

Waste exchange activities based on the commercial supply/demand principle within the Croatian Chamber of Economy are underway. The number of Croatian organizations partaking in waste exchange activities is continually increasing.

Financing   

No information is available

Cooperation  

No information is available

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This information was provided by the Government of Croatia to the 5th Session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: April 1997.

 

SCIENTIFIC AND TECHNOLOGICAL COMMUNITY

No information is available.

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FARMERS

No information is available.

 

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SCIENCE

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies    

No information is available

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

No information is available

Programmes and Projects   

The environmental protection and research of the Adriatic sea and other natural resources are set up as the research priorities of national significance within a list of 13 research fields defined by the National Science and Research Programme. Research connected to these priorities is principally oriented toward the protection of Croatia's natural resources, primarily of the Adriatic Sea and its coastal areas, as well as towards water and air pollution, ecosystem and biodiversity research, and falls, thus, into the following categories:

- marine research,
- monitoring the quality of surface and underground water,
- monitoring the radioactivity of waters, soil and air,
- monitoring ground air quality,
- developing technological principles for water purification processes,
- organizing data banks and developing computer models for pollutant cycles and dispersion
- modeling of absorption processes and the distribution of micro-elements at the solid/liquid interfaces, and
- transport of atmospheric pollutants and smog formation.

The detection and estimation of oganophosphous and organchlorine compounds entering the environment as pesticides or industrial discharges (PBs, dioxins) require complex biochemical methods and specific monitoring programmes. These programmes have been aimed at monitoring persistent compounds in surface and ground waters, rain and snow, as well as critical biological fluids: human milk, serum, and urine. Environmental research is also being pursued through the study of atmospheric reactions including ozone initiated smog formulation, a field of chemical kinetics in the gaseous phase, and part of the EUROTRAC (European Experiment on Transport and Transformation of Environmentally Relevant Trace Constituents in the Troposphere over Europe) Programme. Monitoring of atmospheric pollutants for various micro environments and human populations to assess levels of exposure has taken place. Research in this field involves atmospheric gaseous and particulate pollutants, indoor and outdoor sampling, frequencies and seasonal variations in concentrations, with the aim to introduce, regulate and enforce preventive and prophylactic measures.

Status 

The distribution and the fate of radio nuclides and micro-constituents in natural aquatic systems, including surface and underground waters, is a major activity involving several laboratories. The Rudjer Boskovich Institute and its laboratories in Zagreb and Rovinj are national centres licensed to monitor the radioactivity of water, soil and biota. The Zagreb laboratory is the main national centre for using radio nuclides in tracing the underground movement of water and serves as the national focal point to monitor radioactivity in accidental situations.

Challenges  

The research field connected to environmentally-sound technologies (ESTs) is the least developed due to lack of financing and human resources. Therefore, the Government of Croatia believes that this segment should be developed mostly by the business sector and industry, based on the economic and financial consequences of introducing eco-efficiency.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising   

No information is available

Information   

No information is available

Research and Technologies 

Waste water purification technologies in Croatia are partly of domestic design and partly imported. The evaluation of chemical engineering principles and the appropriate technologies for water purification and waste water treatment are part of a permanent project. The approach is based on analytical techniques and studies of chemical reactions forming the basis for chemical water conditioning.

Field research is followed by the development of mathematical models for the dispersion of pollutants in surface and groundwater, particularly with respect to the supply of drinking water from underground reservoirs in urban areas. A corollary activity, using the same advanced computer systems, is the systematic storage and retrieval system for environmental data.

Financing   

In 1996 the number of scientists, engineers and technicians engaged in environmental scientific projects was 70 and total expenditures for environmental scientific projects were 300,000,00 US$.

Cooperation  

No information is available

   

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This information was provided by the Government of Croatia to the 5th Session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: April 1997.

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INFORMATION

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies    

No information is available

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement   

No information is available

Programmes and Projects   

No information is available

Status 

The matrix below gives an overview of how national authorities rate the information available for decision making.

Agenda 21 Chapters

Very good

Good

Some good data but many gaps

Poor

Remark s

2. International cooperation and trade    

X

   
3. Combating poverty  

X

     
4. Changing consumption patterns    

X

   
5. Demographic dynamics and sustainability  

X

     
6. Human health  

X

     
7. Human settlements    

X

   
8. Integrating E & D in decision-making      

X

 
9. Protection of the atmosphere

X

       
10. Integrated planning and management of land resources    

X

   
11. Combating deforestation          
12. Combating desertification and drought    

X

   
13. Sustainable mountain development      

X

 
14. Sustainable agriculture and rural development    

X

   
15. Conservation of biological diversity          
16. Biotechnology      

X

 
17. Oceans, seas, coastal areas and their living resources  

X

     
18. Freshwater resources  

X

     
19. Toxic chemicals    

X

   
20. Hazardous wastes  

X

     
21. Solid wastes

X

       
22. Radioactive wastes  

X

     
24. Women in sustainable development    

X

   
25. Children and youth  

X

     
26. Indigenous people    

X

   
27. Non-governmental organizations  

X

     
28. Local authorities  

X

     
29. Workers and trade unions    

X

   
30. Business and industry      

X

 
31. Scientific and technological community    

X

   
32. Farmers      

X

 
33. Financial resources and mechanisms      

X

 
34. Technology, cooperation and capacity-building    

X

   
35. Science for sustainable development      

X

 
36. Education, public awareness and training    

X

   
37. International cooperation for capacity-building      

X

 
38. International institutional arrangements    

X

   
39. International legal instruments    

X

   
40. Information for decision-making    

X

   

 

Challenges  

No information is available

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising   

No information is available

Information   

No information is available

Research and Technologies   

No information is available

Financing 

No information is available

Cooperation

The Croatian scientific and technological community is vitally interested in international and regional cooperation for dissemination and exchange of information. Croatia's scientific community is completely integrated into the international informational network through CARNet as the Croatian part of Internet. In addition, MOST has taken a part in the creation of a Programme of Development of Information Infrastructure for Environmental Management in cooperation with a number of governmental and public bodies in charge of environmental protection.

 

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This information was provided by the Government of Croatia to the fifth session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: April 1997.

Click here for the Croatian Bureau of Statistics.
Click here for the information service for the environment.
Click here for links to statistical agencies in the UN ECE Region.

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INTERNATIONAL LAW

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies    

No information is available

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

International Legal Instruments are covered under the relevant sectoral chapters. This is a list of major agreements and conventions entered into by Croatia and of relevance to Agenda 21:

Air/Atmosphere

Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution (Geneva, 1979)

Protocol to the 1979 Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution on Long-term Financing of the Cooperative Programme for Monitoring and Evaluation of the Long-range Transmission of Air Pollutants in Europe (EMEP) (Geneva, 1984)

Protocol to the 1979 Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution on Further Reduction of Sulfur Emissions (Oslo 1994)

Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer (Vienna, 1985)

Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer (Montreal, 1987)

Amendment to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer (London, 1990)

Amendment to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer (Copenhagen. 1992)

United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (Rio de Janeiro, 1992)

Nature/Biodiversity

International Convention for the Protection of Birds (Paris, 1950)

Convention on Wetlands of International Importance Especially as Waterfowl Habitat (Ramsar, 1971)

Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage (Paris, 1972)

International Plant Protection Convention (Rome, 1951)

Convention on Biological Diversity (Rio de Janeiro, 1992)

Agreement on the Conservation of Cetaceans of the Black Sea, Mediterranean Sea and Contiguous Atlantic Area (Monaco, 1992)

Waste Hazardous Substances

Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and their Disposal (Basel, 1989)

European Agreement Concerning the International Carriage of Dangerous Goods by Road (ADR) (Geneva, 1956)

International Convention for Safe Containers, 1972 and Changes of 1981, 1983, 1991

Prevention and help in case of accidents

Convention on Environmental Impact Assessment in a Transboundary Context (Espoo, 1991)

Convention on Assistance in the Case of a Nuclear Accident or Radiological Emergency (Vienna, 1986)

Convention on Early Notification of a Nuclear Accident (Vienna, 1986)

Cooperation Agreement on the Forecast, Prevention and Mitigation of Natural and Technological Disasters Among the Government of the Republic of Austria, the Government of the Republic of Croatia, the Government of the Republic of Hungary, the Government of the Republic of Italy, the Government of the Republic of Poland, and the Government of the Republic of Slovenia (Vienna 1992)

Civil Liability

International Convention on Civil Liability for Oil Pollution Damage

(Brussels, 1969)

International Convention on the Establishment of an International Fund for Compensation for Oil Pollution Damage (Brussels, 1971)

Convention on Civil Liability for Nuclear Damage (Vienna, 1963)

Sea

Convention for the Protection of the Mediterranean Sea Against Pollution (Barcelona, 1976)

Protocol for the Prevention of Pollution of the Mediterranean Sea by Dumping from Ships and Aircraft (Barcelona, 1976)

Protocol Concerning Cooperation in Combating Pollution of the Mediterranean Sea by Oil and other Harmful Substances in cases of Emergency (Barcelona, 1976)

Protocol for the Protection of the Mediterranean Sea Against Pollution from Land-based sources (Athens, 1980)

Protocol Concerning the Mediterranean Specially Protected Areas (Geneva, 1982)

Protocol for the Protection of the Mediterranean Sea Against Pollution Resulting from Exploration and Exploitation of the Continental Shelf and the Sea-bed and its Sub-soil (Madrid, 1994)

International Convention Relating to Intervention on the High Seas in Cases of Oil Pollution Casualties (Brussels, 1969)

International Convention for Prevention of Pollution from Ships (Marpol Convention) 1973 with Annexes I, II, III, IV, V with Changes of 1984, 1985, 1987, 1989, 1990

Protocol of 1978 Relating to the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (London, 1978)

Convention on the Prevention of Marine Pollution by Dumping of Waste and Other Matters (1972)

United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (1982)

Protocol Relating to Intervention on the High Seas in cases of Pollution by Substances Other than Oil (London, 1993)

Waters

Convention on the Protection and Use of Transboundary Watercourses and International Lakes (Helsinki, 1992)

Convention on Cooperation for the Protection and Sustainable Use of the Danube River (Sofija, 1994)

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

No information is available

Programmes and Projects   

No information is available

Status   

No information is available

Challenges  

No information is available

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising   

No information is available

Information   

No information is available

Research and Technologies   

No information is available

Financing   

No information is available

Cooperation  

Bilateral treaties in the area of environmental protection

Agreement on Water Management Relations between the Government of the Republic of Croatia and the Government of the Republic of Hungary (Pecuh, 1994)

Agreement on Water Relations Management between the Government of the Republic of Croatia and the Government of Bosnia and Herzegovina (Dubrovnik, 1996)

Yugoslavian-Italian Agreement on Co-operation in the Protection of Adriatic Sea Water and Coastal Areas from Pollution (Succession) (1974)

Agreement on Water Relations Management between the Government of the Republic of Croatia and Government of the Republic of Slovenia (Zagreb, 1996)

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This information was provided by the Government of Croatia to the fifth session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: April 1997.



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