Green Phone 2021 Annual Work Report

Another year of work on the Green Phone is behind us. The Association Sunce receives reports of environmental problems through the Green Phone service, and Sunce’s legal team does not neglect any of the received reports. At the annual level, we successfully resolve about 80% of the received cases, and we continue to resolve those pending cases through administrative procedures and disputes that we initiate as an Association.

In 2021, we resolved 220 cases of 285 that were received which is 77% of all received cases and also in 2021 we continued to resolve some cases from previous years. Some of the received cases require more time to resolve and they are still in the proceedings before the competent authorities. Work on them will continue through 2022.

The largest number of reports are related to the waste category (95 reports), such as illegal landfills, deficiency or inadequate positioning of containers for separate waste collection and deficiency of a system that would recognize the needs of citizens and contribute to realizing legal waste management goals.

The second most numerous category of reports was illegal construction (55 reports), which mostly refers to illegal construction at sea and on the coast. This year, and also in 2020, the number of received reports for the discharge of untreated wastewater into the environment, especially into the sea, is increasing, mainly on islands that yet do not have a suitable drainage system.

Same as last year, 75% of reports came from outside Split, which indicates the continued expansion of the Green Phone’s influence throughout the two coastal counties covered by the Association Sunce – Split-Dalmatia and Dubrovnik-Neretva.

In 2021, through the project Preserving the Adriatic Sea Ecosystems by Active Participation of Citizens – SEAS, students of the Faculty of Law in Split (PFST) that are keen on learning about environmental law had been includedin the work of the Green Phone. One PFST student volunteered on the Green Phone cases within the Department of Enviromental Law and as a part of the cleaning action held a public lecture on the issue of marine litter and the requirements of the Protocol for Organizing Clean-up Actions in the Marine Environment and Coastal area on the Territory of the Republic of Croatia, the Collection and Processing of Data of Marine Litter.

Also, at the expert conference “Improvement of the Legal Tools in the Protection of the Marine Environment” organised within the SEAS project, we talked about the legal tools and procedures that are used by the Sunce’s legal team to solve the Green Phone cases as well as the common difficulties encountered in practicing them.

The main focus of our work has been on raising awareness of the problem of illegal beach filling and unsustainable construction on the coast. For this purpose, an article about the beach filling and positive practice examples of public bodies responsible for the supervision of maritime assets – Beach fill and practices of the authorities, was published. It was also the most read article on the Sunce’s website, which shows how big is the interest of our readers on the topic and its recognized importance.

The work of the Green Phone during 2021 was covered by numerous Internet portals, and we were guests and gave statements on television and radio shows. The Green Phone was presented in shows on HTV, Nova TV, Radio Sunce, Radio Dalmatia and Radio Campus, as well as on the portals Dalmacija Danas, Radio Dalmacija, Morski, Glas Otoka, Prelistaj, Eko Vjesnik, Hina and T- portal.

We are especially pleased with your increasing activation in the matters of environmental problems in your communities, which is why you are joining in initiatives aimed at solving a specific problem. We are truly happy when we can support commendable goals.

For that reason, through 2021, we provided support to the following civic initiatives: GI Ne damo Gredu, GI wind farm Drniš, GI SOS Osejava, GI ZA Dugi Rat, GI for the development of the island of Drvenik Veli, GI A place that wants to live, GI Perna, GI Trogir and Plano.

In 2022, we will continue to work dedicatedly on your reports and we are thankful for providing us a better insight into the environmental problems in the various communities. Without our common concern for the environment, its effective and timely protection would be lacking.

You can report your environmental problem to the already known number 072 123 456 or contact our lawyers directly via e-mail:

Ivana Krstulović Baković: [email protected]

Hajdi Biuk: [email protected]

Andrea Tvrdić: [email protected]

We hope that 2022 will be marked by even greater progress in creating a more beautiful and healthier environment and a legal climate in which citizens can safely and effectively practice their environmental rights.

The Green Phone is co-financed by the SEAS project, which is implemented with the financial support of Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway within the European Economic Area and Norwegian grants, and our project partners are WWF Adria, Association Green Istria, Urbanex d.o.o. and University of South-Eastern Norway (USN).

Greetings from,

Sunce legal team