Friday, March 20, 2015

'Danube Salmon' threatened by power dams

Freshwater fish Huchen, known as "Danube Salmon," is endangered in Balkan rivers due to massive hydropower projects, environmental experts warned on Thursday.

Huchen is threatened by planned hydroelectric power plants and dams, according to a research published by Austrian-based environmental organisation Riverwatch in Slovenian capital Ljubljana.

The research, conducted by 18 scientists from seven countries, said nearly 65 percent of Huchen population live in 43 rivers, covering a total length of 1,840 kilometers, flowing through Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, and Montenegro.

The research has identified the locations of 93 planned dams, saying they would cut the population of Huchen in the Balkans by some 60 to 70 percent if the dams would be built.

Steven Weiss, Co-author of the research and a professor at the University of Graz said the remaining population of Huchen would be too small to sustain in a long run.

Riverwatch advocates canceling of 2,000 projected dams on Balkan rivers through Slovenia to Albania.

Huchen is protected by the EU Natural Habitats Directive and the Bern Convention. 

 Xinhua -

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