News and Announcements

August 3, 2015
A step forward in protection of nature in Albania

High number of Hydropower Plants (HPPs) in Albania adversely affects natural ecosystems, including protected areas, especially national parks. But the construction of the new HPPs in the protected areas will be stopped when the new law comes into force. Currently the law is in the initial planning process phase.  

Positive news came from Albania last week. New law which will end issuing construction permits for Hydropower Plants (HPPs) in protected areas is in the process of preparation, announced Albanian Prime Minister. High number of planned HPPs in Albania harmfully affects natural ecosystems, including protected areas, especially national parks. This law will work towards strengthening the protection of the nature in these crucial areas.

The Director General of the National Agency of Protected Areas (NAPA) Zamir Dedej expressed his positive view of this recent notice. “This decision is a big success for the conservation and supports the efforts of donors’ community and NAPA towards better management of Albanian protected areas,” said Dedej.

This is a significant development in the ongoing efforts to strengthen nature protection in Albania. “There is an alarmingly growing pressure on protected areas and key biodiversity sites in the Western Balkans stemming from hydropower development. If put into effect, the announced law will be a positive sign which will hopefully help curb this negative trend across the region,” says Boris Erg, Director of IUCN Regional Office for Eastern Europe and Central Asia.

Over the last years IUCN has been involved in the implementation of several projects on protected areas in Albania (read more about each project at the related links section). All these projects aim at halting biodiversity loss by improving the system of protected areas in Albania through the application of international standards and good practices for effective management of protected areas. This is an ongoing process, based on a strong partnership with the Ministry of Environment of Albania, as well as the Institute for Nature Conservation of Albania and the Preservation and Protection of Natural Environment in Albania, IUCN members in the country.

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IPA 2013 - Natura 2000 and Protected Areas
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