The landscapes of Aoos, their importance for the residents and local views on small hydropower plants

The landscapes of Aoos, their importance for the residents and local views on small hydropower plants

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What is the landscape of Sarantaporos, Aoos and Voidomatis, through the eyes of the residents?
What do they value in the landscapes of the area?

Will these landscapes be affected by the construction of Small Hydropower Plants (SHPs), and if so, how?

With these questions in mind, we embarked on a 7-day trip to the Aoos River Basin and met its people. By means of a special questionnaire we recorded the importance of landscapes for the locals and their assessment of the impacts from the construction of SHPs.

The value of the landscapes of the Aoos River Basin is recognised by both visitors and official state policies. In MedINA, we believe that the residents and people who work in the area play an important role in the management of its landscape. In this context we collected 50 questionnaires to record how local people relate to their landscapes and what they perceive as threats and pressures on them. The survey covered the entire Aoos River Basin, however more emphasis was placed on the areas where most SHP construction proposals are concentrated, especially the Sarantaporos sub-basin. Although the population of the villages decreases in winter, we had the opportunity to talk to different people from all ages and professions, who share a common feature: an interest in their place.

Number of residents interviewed in each village.

Our next step is to analyse the results and present them in a report that will be shared with local stakeholders. In this way we wish to contribute to the dialogue on the threats to the landscapes of the area.

The project “Landscape Public Participation Tools – LPPT” is being implemented under the Active citizens fund in Greece by MedINA and its partner Society for the Protection of Prespa SPP, in collaboration with Captain Vassilis and Carmen Constantakopoulos Foundation.

The Active citizens fund in Greece is supported through a €15 m grant from Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway as part of the EEA Grants 2014 – 2021. The programme aims to develop the sustainability and capacity of the civil society sector in Greece, and to strengthen its role in promoting and safeguarding democratic procedures, active citizenship and human rights. The Fund Operator for the Active citizens fund in Greece is Bodossaki Foundation in consortium with SolidarityNow. More information: www.activecitizensfund.gr/en/.