Фото: Sean Kuriyan на Unsplash

Even though the air pollution in North Macedonia is a hot topic, the investments in air protection are scarce. Last year, around €8 million were registered as expenditures and investments in air quality protection, show the latest data provided by the State Statistical Office (SSO). The industry and the specialized producers throughout the country have invested in MKD 124,558,000 in the protection of the air that we all breathe, i.e. little above €2 million.

Out of this sum, the whole industry in North Macedonia during last year has invested only MKD 83,278,000 or around €1.3 million. This includes installing filters to prevent emissions of hazardous matters in the air including all other investments that refer to the emission of greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere that is causing climate change.

This low level of investments in air protection in the industry is accompanied by the statistical data about the payments and reimbursements for conducted service for air protection by the private sector, that in 2020 were in the amount of MKD580,000 (around €9,500).

The data from previous years show that in the last year more assets were invested compared to previous years. Therefore, in 2019, the total investments and expenditures regarding air protection were €3.2 million and in the previous year, the amount of invested assets was €3.9 million EUR.

The highest scope of expenditures and investments in air protection were evidenced in 2014 – €13.7 million EUR. It is noticeable that in this period the industry has invested almost all of these assets in the protection from air pollution as a problem that our society has been facing.

In the developed countries – this will also be one of the mandatory criteria for the country’s future EU accession – the protection of the environment is implemented by the principle of “the polluter pays” which means that the expenditures and the investments in a clean environment should be taken over by the legal entity or the physical person that is jeopardizing the living environment i.e. that is polluting the air.