The third meeting of the Drin Core Group took place in Tirana, Albania, on April 6 2011, as part of the Drin Dialogue activities towards the establishment of a shared vision for the management of the extended Drin Basin.
The meeting was organized with the support and collaboration of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), the Global Water Partnership-Mediterranean (GWP-Med) and the Mediterranean Information Office for Environment, Culture and Sustainable Development (MIO-ECSDE), with the financial support of the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency.
The presentations and discussions of the meeting focused on the:
- Outcomes of the National Consultation that took place in Ohrid (5 April 2011);
- Preparation of the Drin Situation Analysis: progress achieved and next steps;
- Developments regarding management activities in the Drin sub-basins;
- The developments and steps ahead regarding the Project Identification Form for the management of the Drin Basin submitted to GEF for financing;
- Upcoming activities within the Drin Dialogue.
During the morning session of the meeting, MIO-ECSDE representative Ms. Thomais Vlachogianni, presented briefly the main activities that MIO-ECSDE has undertaken since the last meeting of the group (4th November 2010, Ohrid), contributing directly and/or indirectly to a coordinated involvement of civil society, and particularly NGOs, in the Drin Dialogue. These include:
- The organization of a networking meeting in Tirana back-to-back with the National Consultation (4th April, 2011) with representatives from national NGOs. The objective of the meeting was to provide information on the Drin Dialogue process and encourage NGOs to participate.
- The development of a Mediterranean Environmental NGOs database within the framework of the MedPartnership project, which can facilitate the involvement of NGOs in the Drin Dialogue process.
- Communication and awareness raising actions through circulars on the developments regarding the Drin Dialogue via its extensive contact lists; dedication of one issue of MIO-ECSDE’s quarterly newsletter Sustainable Mediterranean to the Drin Dialogue; presentations at meetings, etc.
- Enhancement of synergies through MIO-ECSDE’s actions by linking the Drin Dialogue with two major Mediterranean initiatives, in which MIO-ECSDE is a key partner: (a) the UNEP/MAP-GEF Strategic Partnership for the Mediterranean Large Marine Ecosystem (the MedPartnership), where MIO-ECSDE is responsible for the meaningful participation of civil society in the implementation of the project and the overall strengthening of civil society in the Mediterranean. (www.medpartnership.org); (b) the ENPI Horizon 2020 Capacity Building/Mediterranean Environment Programme (CB/MEP) which focuses on environmental integration and capacity building and aims through targeted activities within the partner countries to increase the capacities of all stakeholders (administrations – national, sub national, local authorities – NGOs, private sector, etc.) so as to effectively contribute to the depollution of the Mediterranean Sea by 2020 (www.h2020.net).