Key Area

Albania: Lawsuit against hydropower project on the Vjosa has been filed

++ Dam project on Europe’s last wild river was intended to be realised without adequate environmental assessment or civic participation ++ Legal precedent for rule of law in Albania ++ Tirana, Vienna, December 2, 2016. The planned destruction of the Vjosa, one of Europe’s last big wild rivers, is now being challenged in court.

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228 scientists from 33 countries fight for Europe’s last wild river

++ Scientists demand 3-year construction freeze for hydropower plants on the Vjosa in Albania ++ Environmental assessment according to EU standards urgently required ++ Memorandum submitted to Prime Minister Edi Rama ++ World Rivers Day on September 25 ++

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Save the Blue Heart of Europe: Climbing in Albania

“If you climb it, they will come, and with them ecotourism dollars that could give the people of this area a much preferred alternative to the damming of their river.” Within the context of the Balkan Rivers Tour, a Patagonia climbing team explored climbing possibilities in Albania. They were awed by what they found...

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Scientists criticize dam projects on the Vjosa

++ Scientists from Albania, Austria and Germany demand moratorium on dam construction plans on Europe’s last wild river as well as a 3-year research program ++ Between June 8 and 10, international experts from Austria and Germany met with scientists of the University of Tirana in Albania to discuss the future of the Vjosa river. They adopted a joint position paper, which was handed over to the Albanian Ministry of the Environment.

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Vjosa Story wins first price at Environmental Film Festival Albania

We are proud to announce that Leeway Collective's kayak documentary "One for the River - The Vjosa Story" was awarded the first price at the Environmental Film Festival Albania. The film was winner of the most significant category of the festival "long films". We congratulate Rok and his team for this great achievement!

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A kayak for Rama

++ Albanian Prime Minister receives unusual petition for the protection of the Vjosa ++ Balkan Rivers Tour ends in Tirana ++ Amid the applause of hundreds of spectators kayakers marched with their kayaks through the Albanian capital of Tirana today to hand over a kayak petition to PM Edi Rama. However, neither Edi Rama nor a representative of the government was willing to receive the petition. The police spaciously blocked the entrance. Rozman placed the kayak in front of the police cordon.

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Administrative court stops licence for hydropower plant inside Mavrovo National Park

++License granted by the Macedonian Ministry of Environment was illegal ++ Violation of national environmental law ++ Nature conservationists call upon financier EBRD to withdraw from project “Boskov Most” immediately++ According to an official statement by the Macedonian administrative court, plans for the large hydropower project Boskov Most in the Macedonian Mavrovo National Park are devoid of any legal basis.

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No hydropower dams inside Mavrovo National Park!

++ Day 19 of the Balkan Rivers Tour: protest action against dam construction inside Mavrovo National Park ++ Hydropower projects endanger the last Balkan lynxes ++ On May 4, an international alliance of kayakers, anglers, residents and nature conservationists protested against the construction of hydropower plants inside Mavrovo National Park.

Paddling against the dam tsunami

++ Grand kayak tour to save the Balkan Rivers starts today ++  Today, about 150 paddler are opening the Balkan Rivers Tour on the Sava river in Slovenia. Led by former Slovenian Olympic athlete Rok Rozman, kayakers from all over Europe will paddle the most stunning and most threatened rivers in the Balkans over the next 35 days. This is without par in Europe. With this tour, they are taking a clear stance against the imminent dam tsunami.

European Parliament criticizes Albanian government for hydropower projects at the Vjosa and in protected areas

Tirana, Vienna, Radolfzell, April 15, 2016 Today, the European Parliament criticized the Albanian government for the planning of hydropower projects and called upon them to be more considerate of protected areas and other sensitive nature areas, especially national parks. In the current Enlargement Report that was adopted by the parliament in Brussel yesterday, the Vjosa river is specifically mentioned.

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