ABCnews: Lunacek for Vjosa

Chronicle prepared by ABCnews

After the request for the protection of Vjosa as a national park, included in an article of the resolution of April 14, 2016 of the European Parliament for Albania, the MEP Ulrike Lunacek raises again in the European Parliament the risk of the destruction of the last wild river in Europe, the Vjosa. During the May 24 session of the European Parliament’s foreign affairs committee in Brussels, MEP Ulrike Lunaçek referred to the visit to Tirana and the cruise to Vjosa, focusing on the importance of protecting Vjosa for its great natural, economic, historical and cultural values. social to the river, flowing undisturbed in a natural way, characterized by canyons, islands and bends that create wonderful meanders.

Ulrike Lunacek, Vice-President of the EP: I want to dwell on a point which is part of the latest resolution of the European Parliament for Albania and which has to do with the river Vjosa, the last wild river left in Europe and flowing naturally without influence. In Albania, an activity was developed by civil society in the framework of the Balkan Rivers Tour and by River Watch. I personally had the opportunity to go rafting on this river for three hours. It is very beautiful indeed, but it is not protected by law.

Ulrieke Lunacek on behalf of the green group which has the support of all other political groups in the European Parliament on the issue of Vjosa, asks the Albanian authorities to make an assessment of the environmental impact of the “Pocem” hydropower plant project according to European standards.

Ulrike Lunacek, Vice-President of the EP: We also met with the Deputy Prime Minister, Mr. Peleshi, and asked him to respect European standards, since the construction of a hydropower plant is planned on the Vjosa river and this was granted to Turkey with a concession. We request that an assessment be made for the environmental impact of the project according to European standards. We fear that since the hydropower project has been awarded to Turkey, this environmental impact assessment will not be done. It would be a real pity if Vjosa was destroyed.

In a joint press statement of River Watch, Euronatur and EcoAlbania entitled “A kayak for Rama”, it is said that hundreds of Europeans practicing kayaking came from Germany, Austria, Greece, Slovenia, Italy, the Netherlands and the United States of America. have protested in front of Prime Minister Edi Rama’s office to give the Prime Minister the kayak with the slogan “Stop the construction of the hydropower plant on the Vjosa river and turn Vjosa into a national park”. The protest initiative is part of the Balkan Rivers Tour that started on April 16 in Sava, Slovenia and ended on May 20 in Tirana.

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