Nearly 100,000 against dams in Mavrovo National Park

One of Europe‘s oldest national parks shall remain free of new dams. Until yesterday 97,804 people signed a letter of protest against two projected hydropower plants inside the Mavrovo National Park in Macedonia. Today, the petition was handed over to the Macedonian Prime Minister Nicola Gruevski. This action was part of the Save the Blue Heart of Europe campaign.

© Pim de Klerk

However, the message was not only addressed to the Prime Minister, but also to the World Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) – click here for more information. Both financial institutions intend to finance the dams. “These projects are an attack on Europe´s most relevant protected area category, an attack on the national park trademark and as such are unacceptable”,  says Gabriel Schwaderer, CEO of EuroNatur.
 
Rich in forests, the Mavrovo National Park is home to wolves, bears, otters and one of the rarest mammals in Europe: the Balkan Lynx - a critically endangered subspecies of the Eurasian Lynx. This national park is the only known area where the rare cat is still procreating verifiably. According to the experts of the IUCN Cat Specialist Group (International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources), the hydropower projects may lead to the Balkan Lynx’s extinction.

Save the Blue Heart of Europe campaign - official website

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