Stop Skavica, Save Drin River

Stop Skavica, Save Drin River

January 22, 2022
Signatures: 2,244Next Goal: 2,500
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Why this petition matters

Started by Ferzileta Gjika

Drin River Unite! SKAVICA DAM Divide! Save Drin River.

My beautiful birthplace Dibra is at risk of disappearing forever.

Save Drin River, Save Biodiversity!

Say yes to Solar, No To Dams!

We Demand to Stop Skavica Dam. We must UNITE Together to Stop SKAVICA. Albanian hydropower is a disaster for ecosystems, communities, and the climate. We must stop SKAVICA DAM Project in Dibra, Albania
Scientific data shows that dams and their reservoirs create GHG emissions due to flooding, river alteration, and destruction of carbon-sequestering forests. Dams reduce water and sediment flows to downstream habitat, and decimate a river’s estuary, where many of the world’s fish species spawn. They also increase ecosystems’ vulnerability to climate change.

Last free-flowing part of the Drin River in Albania -Skavica hydro power plant is threatening this great river. 35 Villages would be flooded and thousands of inhabitants would be displaced. Rare species like "Thellenxa e malit part of family Rock partridge" will be extinct, due to Skavica Dam. Despite the fact that Drin river in Albania is already mostly dammed up from Fierza and Koman Dams, the stretch around this dam project is still magnificent.

Bechtel Corp., which built Hoover Dam, destroying the Colorado River and funds enviro groups (also shilling for U.S. river destruction) continues to destroy rivers across the planet.

How did Bechtel Corp., found my birthplace Fushe-Alie, Diber Albania as one of his mega projects to destroy Drin River? 

This is my story. What is yours?!...

My name is Ferzileta Gjika and I was born in Fushe-Alie, Diber, Albania. My beautiful birthplace Fushe-Alie, Diber, Albania, is among other 35 villages that would be under water with Skavica Dam project. I grew up in Fushe-Alie, where the smell of the flowers, fresh air, and crystal water along with the sunrise over Korabi mountain, woke me up daily  and filled my day with energy. The energy came from the beautiful noise of Black Drin River as a reminder that life has begun with the existence of water. I grew up playing with rocks and seeing beautiful colors of rocks and seeing sand changes with season. When winter came we celebrated snow, and appreciated Drin River that continued motions its natural way, without interruption. My birthplace is still beautiful, with large productive fields surrounded by beautiful hills and mountains. Along side with beautiful nature and Drin River, I was blessed because of people who lived Fushe-Alie, had created a sense of community and belonging all together. I remember, as a community, we helped each other good times and difficult time, and we shared our resources to help one another. Doing so, we were happy and we continued this day by day and year by year. Today, this community, the indigenous people of Fushe-Alie, are threaten to be displaced and along with this will continue the loss of identity, culture, history, and the beautiful fields, which are very rich and productive, creating food and resources. 

Black Drin River is located in the Balkan Peninsula at the crossroad of Europe, the river basin’s varied climate and topography have shaped a vast of flora and fauna. In addition, it has been recognized as one of the most important biodiversity hot spots in Europe. The Drin Basins is classified as an important Bird Area of international importance by designation under the Bird Life Convention.

A 335km long (208miles), the Drin is the longest river of Albania of which 285km (177miles) passes across Albania, and the remainder through Kosovo and North Macedonia. It starts at the confluence of its two headwaters, namely the Black Drin and White Drin. It originates in the mountainous northern mountain range, flows westwards through the valley of Korabi mountain range and Lura mountain range, Albanian Alps and Dukagjin Highlands, and eventually drains into the Adriatic Sea.

After a decade of efforts to protect Black Drin River, the supporters of the cause are gathering to request the Prime Minister of Albania to Stop Skavica Project as soon as possible. Sign the petition and share it with your friends, so that more people join this effort to protect what nature took thousands of years to create.

Petition to Stop Skavica Dam in Diber, Albania!

We, stand against the Skavica Dam Project because this project:
1. It will cause the disappearance of Dibra and Albanian identity, along with cultural, historical and ancient heritage [ancestral domains] where there are about 110,000 Albanians from Dibra [known as Dibran], and 35 villages will be drowned, with 10-20 more neighboring villages surrounding face the increase methane greenhouse gas, are at risk of flooding. 
2. It is being accelerated by its legal process, especially the right of Dibrans to free, prior and informed speech according to the Constitution of Albania has been denied.
3. Does not consider other alternatives for energy security in the country. Today there are better alternatives than the construction of the large Skavica hydropower plant and they should be considered in project planning. Other energy sources - coming from wind and solar - have proven to be economically competitive, can be built faster and do not worsen the climate in the country.
4. It will destroy the biodiversity and habitat of many species in more than ten thousand hectares of Dibra county and will endanger more than 60,000 indigenous people downstream with the risk of massive floods, as this dam can not hold large inflows of water from river;
5. It will bring in an unnecessary 530 million euro loan from the US, further aggravating our debt-ridden economy, and cost you three times as much to maintain.
6. It will be necessary for every Albanian, including those outside Dibra, to shoulder the debt.
7. Has a short lifespan due to the high degree of sedimentation in the area.
8. Generates high reservoir maintenance costs and a relatively short lifespan, as the high sediment load of fine and coarse particles will fill the reservoir.
9. As a result of the construction of the Skavica hydropower plant, it will increase the risks of seismic activity in the Dibra region.
10. As a result of the very high cost of maintenance, it can cause our government to hand over the territory of Dibra to repay the loan.In line with these risks.

We, the Albanian community, call on the Albanian government, specifically the President of Albania Ilir Meta, the Prime Minister Edi Rama and the Minister of Infrastructure and Energy Belinda Balluku:

1. To agree on a time period in the following months (January - April) of 2022 for a complete review of the current development plans of hydropower plants in the Drini i Zi river basin.

2. Establishment of a “Skavica Scientific Roundtable” involving local and international experts to allow informed decisions to be made on key issues identified in relation to the Drini i Zi River Basin.

3. Follow Albania's political and legal commitments to meet international conventions as well as European Union (EU) requirements.

4. Examine other energy alternatives such as solar, wind, and geothermal and categorically prohibit the construction of a large hydropower plant in Albania with dimensions similar to that of Skavica.

5. To hear the voice of the indigenous people of Dibra who are directly affected by the flood of their country, and the neighboring villages of the Dibra region, whose identity, history, culture and houses and lands are in danger of disappearing forever

What are the next steps?

We need as many signatures as possible to submit this petition to the Prime Minister of Albania. Sign and share on social media with friends, in order to show how many people want to protect Drin River, forever


Ne Dibranët dhe gjithe Shqiptaret i themi JO Digës së Skavicës dhe PO alternativave energjetike.
Projekti i Digës së Skavicës cenon proceset ligjore dhe kushtetutën shqiptare, është shkatërrues për mjedisin, shkatërron identitetin dhe kulturën dibrane dhe identitetin e popullit shqiptar dhe është kundër interesit kombëtar të vendit. Është krejtësisht e pakuptueshme se si mund të jete dhënë një leje mjedisore për një projekt hidroenergjetik në një shtrirje lumi me vlerë ekologjike dhe të rrallë sa ky i rajonit i Drinit të Zi! Ju lutem veproni tani për të ndalur këtë çmenduri të politikanëve të papërgjegjshëm. Ndërsa emergjenca klimatike përshkallëzohet, qeveritë e ndryshme te Evropes dhe Amerikes po kërkojnë mënyra për të reduktuar emetimet e “greenhouse gas” dhe "go green". Ndersa industria hidroenergjetike ne Shqiperi po kërkon të përfitojë nga urgjenca klimatike duke e reklamuar në mënyrë të rreme fuqinë e saj si "të pastër, të gjelbër, të qëndrueshëm dhe të rinovueshëm". Hidrocentrali i Skavicës është energji e pistë dhe nuk duhet lejuar të kualifikohet për subvencione ose të konsiderohet “energji e pastër”. Është një fatkeqësi e të drejtave të njeriut, klimës dhe mjedisit. Ndërkohë që SHBA ka ndaluar me ligj ndërtimin e hidrocentraleve të mëdha, siç është ai i Skavicës, dhe shteti federal merret vetëm me mirëmbajten e hidrocentraleve ekzistuese, është e pakuptueshme se si është përfshirë një kompanie amerikane në ndërtimin e HEC Skavica.

Firmosni peticionin dhe bashkohuni thirrjes se Dibraneve per te thene Jo Skavices dhe Po Dibres.



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Signatures: 2,244Next Goal: 2,500
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