Participants in Ulog © Brais Palmas

Neretva Science Week 2023 took place from May 30th to June 7th. A diverse team of 70 scientists from 17 countries gathered in small town Ulog, to contribute to the conservation of the Neretva river system. They were accompanied by photographers, activists, and artists. 

Prime Minister Edi Rama, Patagonia CEO Ryan Gellert, and Minister for Tourism and Environment Mirela Kumbaro signed official declaration of Vjosa Wild River National Park © Anika Konsek

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.

Vjosa near Tepelene © Christian Baumgartner

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.

We invite you to join our next webinar on January 31st (6pm MET) to learn about the results of the 50 scientists that joined the Neretva Science Week in summer 2022 and how their science contributes to the protection of this highly intact river system.  Please REGISTER HERE to join this webinar. 

Every two years, we analyse the situation of hydropower development in the Balkans. Since the last update of this kind in 2020, another 246 HPPs came into operation, leaving hundreds of kilometres of rivers and streams devastated. The good news: some positive signals have recently come from Bosnia and Hercegovina and Albania.

Pages