Press Release

The Ministry of Environment misses, the court session for Poçem HPP was postponed

17548865_10212357833811859_644730291_oThe planned judgment court session for the Poçem HPP today was postponed because the representatives of the Ministry of Environment and National Agency of Environment were not present. As the judgment should be done based also on the approved documents by these institutions the claimants asked that on the next session they should be present in order to continue the judgment.

Meanwhile the Ministry of Energy and Kovlu Energy company representatives were present at the session and asked the same request to the judge. The case is sent to the court by the national and international NGOs, RiverWatch, EuroNatur and EcoAlbania, together with 38 affected residents.

Through this lawsuit they ask the cancelation of the environmental declaration and the concessionary contract. Next session will be held on April 13th.

Background information

·         The Vjosa is the last big wild river in Europe outside Russia. Entirely unobstructed, she flows through inaccessible gorges and sections with enormous gravel banks and islands on her course of almost 270 kilometers from the Pindus Mountains to the Adriatic Sea. The Albanian government under Prime Minister Edi Rama is currently about to have a Turkish company construct a hydropower project within the ecologically most valuable stretch of the Vjosa.

·         The campaign “Save the Blue Heart of Europe” aims to protect the most valuable rivers in the Balkans. The campaign is coordinated by the NGOs Riverwatch and EuroNatur and carried out together with partner organisations in the Balkan countries.

·         The lawsuit againds the Poçem HPP was filed on December 2nd by the 3 organizsations that are running the Save the Blue Heart of Europe Campaign and 38 affected residents.

·         The Lawyer that represts the claimants is Vladimir Meçi, a specialized lawyer on legal and practical field. Expert on constitutional, criminal and civil law. As well as on the administrative and elections law.