Declaration of the Group “To protect the rivers” for the protection of the Bënça river

The Bënça River is one of the branches of the Vjosa River and has a length of 26 km. Bênça Valley lies between Trushnica and Buză o Bredh. It is an impressive valley which takes full shape after the merger of Gurra e Progonati with the stream of Nivica, forming the river Bënça, which creates the canyons of the same name, an amazing ecosystem with great biological-natural values, and with a biodiversity of prominent. Recently, 5 HPPs are planned to be built in the valley of Bênça, 2 of which have started work, endangering natural monuments protected by law such as: Canyons of Nivica, Waterfall of Progonat, Erosive Terraces of Bënça, Buza e Bredh Luzat as well as the integrity of the entire Vjosa catchment, which is considered one of the unique rivers in the entire continent.

Conveying the voice of the community and hundreds of other civil society actors involved in the initiative for the protection of the Bênça river, Albanian NGOs, as part of the “Protect the rivers” initiative, oppose the hydro-energy projects in the Bvnça valley as they believe that this very valley potentially constitutes the “heart” of a possible National Park that includes the entire Vjosa valley.

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