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Upper Nitra, Slovakia

Region: Upper Nitra
Country: Slovakia
Leader: CSPS

About the case study

The coal and carbon territory in Horná Nitra consists from two districts Prievidza and Partizánske in self-governing Trenčín region, Slovakia. The key historical moment that defines the identity of the Horná Nitra was socialist industrialization in the 1950s- 1980s based on soviet models of modernization of the economy and society. The region has a long tradition, especially in the engineering, textile, chemical and rubber industries and it ranks among the economically strongest regions in Slovakia. The stability of the region, however, has been heavily influenced by extensive coal mining activities and the region faces problems associated with slope deformations, the management of undermined areas and mining areas and facilities. Moreover, the Nováky coal power plant has been the second largest producer of sulphur dioxide and nitrogen oxide emissions and the third largest producer of solid pollutant emissions in the country. The decision of the central government to phase out coal mining in Horná Nitra was made in 2018 and the mines will be definitely closed after the end of the inflow of subsidies in 2023.

The methodology of the research was mixed. Socio-economic data has been collected from national sources, in particular national statistical office, but also from databases on the firm-level. Furthermore, Eurostat data has been used to provide an overview of the region’s economic, financial and demographic composition based on a descriptive analysis. The focus group focused on the territorial stress induced by mine closure and rapid decarbonisation policies introduced in the region of Horná Nitra. The aim of in-depth interviews was to obtain and contrast differential stakeholder assessments of transformative capacities. The survey was conducted using a structured self-report questionnaire consisted of 90 items representing 17 socio-psychological constructs. The data collection process has been completed and the case study report, which summarises the first results, is ready and available.

The main findings / results so far are the following:

The challenges of transformation are quite demanding, especially regarding of people’s living standards, jobs as well as the depopulation of the region. Despite all the strain situations ongoing in the area we can identify several copying strategies:

  • Insistence on climate and energy policies implementation
  • Speeding up regional economy transformation
  • Building local capacities
  • International networking

Local support

Government of the Slovak Republic


Access the full case study here.