- ‘Historic moment’ for nature as Europe’s first wild river national park announced in Albania, The Guardian (Mar 15, 2023)
Albania ( a(w)l-BAY-nee-ə; Albanian: Shqipëri or Shqipëria), officially the Republic of Albania (Albanian: Republika e Shqipërisë), is a country in Southeast Europe. The country is located in the Balkans on the Adriatic and Ionian Seas within the Mediterranean Sea and shares land borders with Montenegro to the northwest, Kosovo to the northeast, North Macedonia to the east and Greece to the south. Spanning an area of 28,748 km2 (11,100 sq mi), it displays a varied range of climatic, geological, hydrological and morphological conditions. The country's landscapes range from rugged snow-capped mountains in the Albanian Alps and the Korab, Skanderbeg, Pindus and Ceraunian Mountains, to fertile lowland plains extending from the coasts of the Adriatic and Ionian seas. Tirana is the capital and largest city in the country, followed by Durrës, Vlorë, and Shkodër.
In ancient times, the Illyrians inhabited northern and central regions of Albania, whilst Epirotes inhabited the south. Several important ancient Greek colonies were also established on the coast. In the 2nd century BCE, the region was annexed by the Roman Republic, and after the division of the Roman Empire it became part of Byzantium. The first known Albanian autonomous principality – Arbanon – was established in the 12th century. The Kingdom of Albania, Principality of Albania and Albania Veneta were formed between the 13th and 15th centuries in different parts of the country, alongside other Albanian principalities and political entities. In the late 15th century, Albania became part of the Ottoman Empire until 1912, when the modern Albanian state declared independence. In 1939, the Kingdom of Albania was invaded by Italy, which became Greater Albania, and then a protectorate of Nazi Germany during World War II. Following the war, the People's Socialist Republic of Albania was formed, which lasted until the Revolutions of 1991 concluded with the fall of communism in Albania and eventually the establishment of the current Republic of Albania.
Climate action[edit | edit source]
Climate change is predicted to have serious effects on the living conditions in Albania. The country is recognised as vulnerable to climate change impacts, ranked 80 among 181 countries in the Notre Dame Global Adaptation Index of 2019. Factors that account for the country's vulnerability to climate change risks include geological and hydrological hazards, including earthquakes, flooding, fires, landslides, torrential rains, river and coastal erosion.
As a party to the Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Agreement, Albania is committed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 45% and achieve carbon neutrality by 2050 which, along with national policies, will help to mitigate the impacts of the climate change. W
Biodiversity[edit | edit source]
Wikipedia: Albania: Flora and fauna. Although a small country, Albania is distinguished for its rich biological diversity. The total number of plants is over 3250 species, approximately 30% of the entire flora species found in Europe. Over a third of the territory of Albania – about 10,000 square kilometres (3,861 square miles);– is forested.
Open spaces[edit | edit source]
Despite being a relatively small country, Albania is exceedingly rich in biodiversity. Its ecosystems and habitats support over 5,550 species of vascular and non-vascular plants and more than 15,600 species of coniferous and non-coniferous evergreens, most of which are threatened at global and European levels. The country has made recent efforts to expand its network of protected areas which now include: 11 national parks, 1 marine park, 718 nature monuments, 23 managed nature reserves, 11 protected landscapes, 4 World Heritage Sites, 4 Ramsar sites and other protected areas of various categories, that when combined, account for 21.36% of the territory. Furthermore, a biosphere reserve, 45 important plant areas and 16 important bird areas are found in the country.
Meanwhile, the central government has proclaimed the Coastline and the Tirana Greenbelt as areas of national importance.
At present, protected areas are constantly under threat by illegal logging, forest fires and the construction of hydroelectric power plants which have prompted ongoing protests from environmentalists and civil society.
The national policy for governing and the management of protected areas is implemented by the Ministry of Environment and Tourism through the National Agency of Protected Areas (AKZM).
Community energy[edit | edit source]
News and comment[edit | edit source]
I Speak For The Trees, April 21
Environmental issues in Albania[edit | edit source]
There are a number of known environmental issues in the post-communist country of Albania. Issues include air and water pollution, poor waste management infrastructure and deforestation. The Albanian environmental movement includes around 40 active non-government organisations.
The country has a moderate and improving performance in the Environmental Performance Index with an overall ranking of 62 out of 180 countries in 2020. Albania's ranking has however decreased since its highest placement at position 15 in the Environmental Performance Index of 2012. W
Deforestation[edit | edit source]
Illegal logging is the main threat to Albanian forests. The other threat comes from forest fires which in the last years have intensified.
Albania had a 2018 Forest Landscape Integrity Index mean score of 6.77/10, ranking it 64th globally out of 172 countries.
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