Belgrade – January 24, 2023 – The Ministry of Mining and Energy (MoME) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) today to work together to support sustainable energy, energy security and energy efficiency. To appropriately mark the occasion, the event was held at the Nikola Tesla Museum in Belgrade. Minister Dubravka Djedovic signed on behalf of the Ministry, while USAID Serbia’s Mission Director Brooke Isham signed on behalf of the USAID Mission in Serbia. United States Ambassador Christopher R. Hill witnessed the signing.
The event was also used to officially launch a series of public service announcements featuring an animated Nikola Tesla designed to help Serbian citizens to understand the importance of conserving energy. The campaign, which was designed through a partnership between the Ministry of Mining and Energy and USAID’s Better Energy activity, also provide tips on ways for households to reduce their energy consumption and save money. "Save, and don't waste energy."
Speaking at the event, Minister Djedovic said: “Through cooperation with the USAID Better Energy project, we will be working to further strengthen the concept of energy efficiency as a new source of energy through development of energy efficiency measures strengthening, monitoring and review of results, and through integrated education and raising awareness of citizens that wasting energy is absolutely not an option, especially during a global energy crisis. The stimulative energy efficiency measures of the Government of Serbia have yielded excellent results. The savings in electricity consumption in October were 15%, in November 7%, while in December citizens have consumed 9.4% less than in the same month of 2021. In that way, 1,380,000 households were eligible for discounts in their electricity bills, which is 44% of households. The biggest savings were made by citizens of Belgrade, Sabac, Novi Sad, Sombor and Nis. It is important that we continue with education of citizens and companies so that we can all benefit from rational consumption of energy.”
Praising the partnership between USAID’s Better Energy activity and the Ministry of Mining and Energy, Ambassador Hill also said: “We all share an obligation to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels. As Serbia develops and adopts new sources of renewable energy, the Serbian people will breathe better as we work together to fight climate change... U.S. companies are actively developing projects in the clean energy space – specifically in wind, solar, and pumped storage hydropower. These U.S. technology solutions will continue to advance Serbia’s capacity to meet the challenges of decarbonizing its energy sector."
USAID’s $10 million Better Energy activity was launched at the end of 2021 and focuses on helping to improve energy efficiency at the municipal level and increasing Serbia’s use of renewable energy resources. Better Energy has already started working with cities across Serbia, including Niš, Sombor, Valjevo, Knjaževac, and Pančevo to reduce their energy consumption.