The construction of the airport within one of the areas with high importance of natural resources has been opposed by the national and international scientific community, alongside the citizen’s resistance.
In the organized conference in Tirana, national and international experts shared the results of their studies about the importance of ecological and cultural values of Vjosa-Narta, including the danger posed to the local population from the urbanization of the area and the youth perspective on sustainable development.
Some of the main results shared by 13 speakers of the conference are:
1. During the last five years, decision-makers have failed to engage in constructive dialogue with the scientific community and civil society to discuss the Vlora airport construction project, despite the latter’s continuous objections.
2. The advancement of the Vlora airport project has been unlawfully conducted in violation of both national laws and international conventions, establishing a dangerous precedent for nature conservation.
3. Vjosë-Narta is an irreplaceable area of high biodiversity significance for both Albania and the entire European continent.
4. The European Union is in the process of introducing a binding law to restore nature in its member states. Albania has the opportunity to avoid the mandatory costs of implementing this law in the future by not sacrificing its high natural values today.
5. Airports constructed in bird migration sites prior to the advancement of scientific understanding have been known to experience management difficulties and incur high costs.
6. Young people are aware of the importance of nature and emphasize that protected areas should remain untouched, safeguarding natural resources for future generations.
7. The national media has been largely apathetic in informing the general public about the construction of the airport within the protected area.
The above reasons make it clear to us that the construction of an airport in Vjosa-Narta would not contribute to the development of the area, but would instead result in a considerable decrease in the environmental wealth of all of Europe.