Information on the coordination meeting of the Platform for environmental justice

The first coordination meeting of the Platform for environmental justice was held on March 30th, 2021. The purpose of the meeting was to elect a President, Vice President, and Secretary of the Platform for environmental justice.

At the meeting, the program manager at CLRA, Nikola Jovanovski introduced the participants with the future activities of CLRA, i.e he informed them that the project is nearing completion, but the Platform as a product of this project will continue its activities and the prepared products are expected to represent the foundation of the future activities of the Platform. Additionally, the participants were informed that the CLRA is in the last phase of creating a website where all news that is currently in the environmental sector can be published.

The voting took place in the first part of the meeting. According to the Article 3 of the Rules of procedure of the platform for environmental justice, it is envisaged that it will be chaired by a President elected by a majority of votes for a term of one year, and in his absence will be replaced by the Vice President.  Academic Vlado Kambovski was elected as a President of the Platform, who is the head of the Center for strategic research Ksente Bogoev at the Macedonian Academy of Sciences and Arts, and the Deputy Minister of Environment and Physical Planning, Hristina Odzaklieska was elected as a Vice President. Both of them with majority of votes. The newly elected President of the Platform, Academic Kambovski, proposed the Program Manager Jovanovski as Secretary of the platform for environmental justice, which was unanimously accepted.

This was followed by welcoming speeches by Academic Kambovski and Deputy Minister Odzaklieska who expressed great gratitude for the expressed trust, as well as praise to other members for the active contribution to the work of the Platform since its establishment until today. The Deputy Minister pointed out that the activities within the project are a realistic overview of the situation in the field of environment in our country, especially emphasizing the need to strengthen the capacity of institutions and the need for certain changes to some legal solutions, as well as the need for coordination at a local and national level.

Academic Kambovski referred to the GAP analysis which is a comprehensive analysis of the situation in environmental law, highlighting that due to that analysis the second document was adopted, i.e the Policy Paper that presents the directions in which environmental justice should be developed, which is a basis for the third and last document, the Roadmap that is an instrument for achieving environmental goals.

The second part of the meeting was dedicated to discussing the next activities of the Platform for environmental justice. It was agreed that a proposal topic will be sent to all members, that will be a priority in the next period, and of course, the members of the Platform were encouraged to give their suggestions.

The Executive Director of the Center for Environmental Research and Information of Eko – svest, Ana Colovikj Lesoska informed the participants that the adoption of new laws, the Law on Hunting, and the Law on Pastures (under the Ministry of agriculture, forestry and water management) is in progress, which have several common aspects with the Law on Environmental Protection (MoEPP). This information served as a proposal for the next activity of the Platform for involvement in that process in order to avoid conflicts in the adoption of laws, emphasizing the need for inter-ministerial coordination.

Finally, it was agreed that the next meeting will start with a thematic discussion of the Platform.

Gorica Nadjinska