June 2011

The week after our return from Austria/ Germany, we continue the discussions with Elisabeth and Dušan. Elisabeth and Michael fly into Dubrovnik for an intensive weekend of talks, and a productive site visit. We feel that the core team is gelling – there are limits with emails, and so face-to-face meetings are vital, especially as the working language is English which can mean mistakes in interpretation for non-native speakers.

The Green Building Council continues its relentless pressure as well, of course. We have agreed to organise a seminar in September to coincide with three events: the 20th anniversary of Montenegro’s parliament declaring the country an Ecological State (20th); the annual Construction Fair in Budva (21st to 25th); and a World GBC ‘World Green Building Week’ (19th to 23rd). While people have been allocated tasks, James is pretty sure nothing much will happen until the end of August, when panic will erupt. We fly out on our annual visit to UK a week after Elisabeth’s visit, so are effectively out of contact for three weeks. A major step is to submit an Expression of Interest to the World GBC, in effect applying for membership. World GBC rules state that only one organisation is a country can be officially recognised (from a World GBC standpoint). Our status up to now has been that of an Associated Group, leaving us open to any other group in the country pre-empting us for recognition. What is only explained to us after the EoI is sent in is the cost of membership – we were left out of a circulation about 2 years ago on the subject. The USD5000 is a mighty sum for a small organisation, when we cannot even afford part-time staff, let alone full-time people and an office.