On November 7th hydro investors from across the Balkans and around the world gathered in Budva, Montenegro for the 2nd International Summit and Exhibition Hydropower Balkans (aka #budvadirtyhydrosummit), to wheel and deal inside a fancy hotel, making corrupt plans to turn the flow of Balkan rivers into cash flow into their pockets. But outside, over 70 people from 8 countries gathered with banners, whistles, loud voices and lots of energy to remind decision makers, locals, investors and national media, that hydropower is not green, and that these rivers belong to everyone.
The banners, whistles and megaphone to tell investors that hydro is dirty energy and investing in it is a terrible decision financially, environmentally and socially. The megaphone was shared by a strong consortium of local organizations including NGO for future in Kelmendi, Ne damo Rijeke, Ekološki-Pokret Donja Bukovica, Green Home, Centar za zaštitu i proučavanje ptica Crne Gore, Bokobran, Porat Budva-Pizana, SOS za Montenegro, NVO Nasa akcija / NGO Our action, Ekološki Pokret Ozon, End Ecocide on Earth, Parks Dinarides and Nature Lovers Montenegro.
This was the first creative active that Balkan River Defence helped organized but did not attend. And it’s success and strength acted as proof that the resistance is growing. That locals are working together, that energy, ideas and creativity is flowing. And the attending nations (Montenegro, Albania, Macedonia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Slovenia and France) in collaboration with all Balkan countries is proof that the opposition for hydropower is stong, organized and not afraid to stand up, speak up and act up for our rivers.
Montenegrin local, Semra Mahmutović did an incredible job or organizing the creative action and we are stoked to have her as part of our Balkan Rivers Network. You can get quotes, photos and more info from her ().