EuroNatur Award 2017

An Ambassador for Nature Conservation

The diplomat Gudrun Steinacker received the 2017 EuroNatur Award on October 11th for her exemplary involvement in the campaign for the protection of the Salina Ulcinj. During her period as ambassador in Montenegro, Gudrun Steinacker demonstrated exceptional personal commitment in supporting the saving of the salt flats.

The lagoon, which was adapted for the production of salt, is one of the most important stopovers and overwintering areas for migrant birds on the Eastern Adriatic coast. However this haven for the flying globetrotters is in jeopardy. The pressure from the tourist industry to develop it is becoming ever greater.  The current operators of the Salina Ulcinj deliberately ran down their operations and have now closed the plant, leading to a considerable loss in its ecological value. Furthermore, the Montenegrin government is not expected to intervene to help. Despite numerous declarations, it has not taken any effective measures to protect this wonder of nature.

Christel Schroeder justified the choice of this year's award winner by saying: "With the granting of this year's Award for Conservation to Gudrun Steinacker, EuroNatur is sending a powerful signal about the need to save the Salina Ulcinj from destruction. She has shown that the diplomatic service can and must set aside its neutrality, when round about us a serious wrong is being committed".   

Acceptance speech of EuroNatur laureate Gudrun Steinacker

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Speech of EuroNatur president Christel Schroeder

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You can get an impression of the threatened natural and cultural heritage in Montenegro in this exciting short film.

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