At a formal ceremony in Tepelena this morning, Albania’s Prime Minister Edi Rama and his Minister of the Environment and Tourism Mirela Kumbaro declared the River Vjosa a Wild River National Park. As from today, the entire River Vjosa in Albania from its border with Greece to the Adriatic sea and its free flowing tributaries – a river system totalling more than 400 kilometres in length – have the very high level of protection.
The feasibility study is the result of six months of extensive fieldwork and in-depth analysis by a team of over 30 experts in areas such as eco-tourism, geomorphology, ecology, planning and management of protected areas, sustainable financing of national parks, legislation, and social and environmental impact assessment.
The famous choreographer Gentian Doda (was bleibt kollektiv) is bringing eleven dancers from all over the world to Tirana for a contemporary dance performance as a tribute to Vjosa! Premiere: October 24 and 25, 2022 @ National Theatre of Opera and Ballet in Tirana
After ten years of dedicated action by local communities, environmentalists, scientists and artists to permanently protect the Vjosa River and its tributaries, today, the Albanian government took the historic step of signing a commitment to establish a Vjosa Wild River National Park. The Wild River National Park will protect the entire network of the Vjosa from the Greek border to the Adriatic Sea, including the free-flowing tributaries. This is something that has never been done before in Europe.
On June 4th, well-known artists from Albanian and abroad performed at the "Vjosa Forever" concert in Tepelena in support of the #VjosaNationalParkNow campaign: At the concert, organized by Blue Heart partner EcoAlbania, hundreds of supporters filled the Lord Byron square in Tepelena and enjoyed the electrifying performances of the #ArtistsForVjosa
On May 6th, EcoAlbania together with 28 residents of Brataj village and the Association "Impetus", filed a lawsuit against four hydropower plants planned on the Shushica river to the Administrative Court of Tirana/Albania. The Shushica is one of the most important tributaries of the Vjosa River, which carries high natural and cultural values.
The Shushica - a tributary of the Vjosa in Albania – is once again under attack from hydropower projects. They had already been averted, since the permits for the plants had long expired. However, we now learned that the Albanian National Environmental Agency had already given the green light on November 16, 2021
After a fundraising campaign, solar panels are installed on the rooftops of public buildings and streets of Kutë village on the Vjosa in Albania as an alternative to hydropower plants for the benefit of the local community and environment
At the urging of nature conservation organizations, the Standing Committee of the Bern Convention took another look at various projects in the Balkans at its most recent meeting. These include an airport in the middle of the Narta Lagoon in the Vjosa delta in Albania or a series of hydropower plants along the Neretva in Bosnia-Herzegovina.
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.
The interactive map to explore the region in detail based on different criteria.
The Eco-Masterplan for Balkan Rivers is a comprehensive study which, for the first time, combines knowledge about biodiversity (fish, mussels, caddisflies), integrity of rivers and floodplains (hydromorphology), as well as the location of protected areas.
We are a coalition of NGOs who have launched the campaign “Save the Blue Heart of Europe” in order to raise awareness about the imminent dam craze on the Balkan peninsula and to spare the most valuable rivers and river stretches from destruction.