Lake Ohrid’s water levels are controlled by ELEM, a power company that oversees outflow via the River Crn Drim, where hydroelectric dams are located. In early 2017, the level dropped below legal limits, bringing yet more danger to the lake’s world-unique ecosystems. We don’t want to see that again.
Once upon a time, Ohrid eels traveled all the way to the Sargasso Sea on the far side of the Atlantic in one of the most romantic and mysterious migrations of the entire natural world. Now, however, their route is blocked by dams. We think it’s time their culture was restored to them.
Macedonia can only protect its most luxurious, life-giving natural resources if it is clear about what and where they are.
In April 2017, a joint team from the World Heritage Center, ICOMOS and IUCN completed a Reactive Monitoring Mission to the UNESCO Ohrid region. This is undertaken when World Heritage properties are considered under threat. The joint team provided 19 recommendations to the Republic of Macedonia, including the cessation of lakeshore construction, total cancellation of the Galichica ski-resort, and abandonment of express road sections. To date, Macedonia’s new government is yet to inform whether and how it intends to comply.