Our group of allies is increasing! Scientists in our network not only lend their own data but also use their independent voices to advocate for the protection of rivers.
Lawsuit filed against hydropower cascade on the Shushica river
On May 6th, Blue Heart partner EcoAlbania together with 28 residents of Brataj village and the Association "Impetus", filed a lawsuit against four hydropower plants (HPPs) planned on the Shushica river to the Administrative Court of Tirana/Albania: HPP Brataj, Gjorm, Kota and Drashovica.
The contract, signed in September 2017, foresees the construction of a cascade with an installed capacity of about 15 Mw, a minimal contributor to the national energy need. In December 2021, EcoAlbania sent a scientific assessment of the Shushica river – including a sharp critique of the Environmental Impact Assessment of the four HPP projects – by national and international scientists to the responsible institutions. The report raises concerns about the long-term environmental impacts, the ecological degradation of the river Shushica and the cumulative effects of HPPs in the lower reaches of the river. Furthermore, the planned hydropower cascade would undermine the sustainable development of the area.
The river Shushica is one of the most important tributaries of the Vjosa River, which carries high natural and cultural values. Within only one week of biodiversity assessment conducted by the group of 30 national and international scientists in June 2021, as many as three new species for science were found, in addition to several new species for Albania and some species listed in the Red List of endangered species, which will be directly endangered by the construction of these hydropower plants.