Save the Danube – Stop destruction!

Petition to protect the “Amazon of Europe”

Danube’s most valuable and best preserved floodplain system along its entire 2,850 kilometers length is threatened with destruction: the "Kopački Rit" in Croatia. A major project to regulate this unique region is currently in the final stage of decision. If the project becomes reality, the natural Danube will be transformed into a monotonous canal, with fatal consequences for its wildlife: The white-tailed eagle, the black stork and the Danube sturgeon would be in severe danger of extinction.

Mihael Zmajlović, the new Croatian Minister for Environment and Nature Protection, is able to stop these destructive plans. Help us saving the Danube and sign the petition to the minister now! Thank you!

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Petition to Mr. Mihael Zmajlović, Croatian Minister for Environment and Nature Protection

Dear Mr. Minister,

The vast wetlands along the Danube, Drava, and Mura Rivers in Croatia are justifiably referred to as “the Amazon of Europe”, in praise of their immaculate natural beauty, great diversity of species and richness. Consequently, and for good reason, they will soon be declared as part of a Transboundary UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. But, incredible as it seems, this very heartland of a designated protected area is threatened with destruction! The world-famous bird sanctuary Kopački Rit on Croatia’s border with Serbia, the most valuable and best preserved wetland area of the entire Danube, shall fall victim to irresponsible environmental intervention.

According to plans currently being laid out by the Croatian Water Management Authorities, the free-flowing Danube in this region shall be regulated and transformed into nothing more than a monotonous waterway. Unique floodplain forests, wet meadows and backwaters will dry out. In total, approximately 500 square kilometers of wetlands would be severely affected, many highly endangered species - like the White-tailed eagle, the Black stork, or the Danube sturgeon – would be in danger of extinction.

Moreover, the proposed channeling of the Danube violates Croatian and EU legislation of water and nature conservation and stands in sharp contrast to your own strong commitment, and the mandate of your Ministry, to ensure international protection for that area.

Dear Mr. Minister, the loss or survival of “Kopački Rit”, the future of one of Europe’s major environmental places of pristine beauty, now depends entirely on you. Your decision will be of enormous consequences, since the natural stretches of the Danube in Serbia are affected by plans of channeling, too. It will therefore set an example for the whole region. I urge you not to approve this project.