This week, European Wilderness Society has submitted a project idea to the 3rd call of the Interreg Danube Transnational Programme. This project aims to increase the protection of natural and cultural heritage, using sustainable ecotourism as a tool. It focuses specifically on ecotourism in the riverine landscapes of the Danube Region, including the Danube, Tisa, and Sava river.
Please also read: Sustainable tourism supports opportunities
European Wilderness Society has taken the lead for the submission of this project. The project partners include:
- Regional Association for Nature Conservation and Sustainable Development, Slovakia
- CEEweb for Biodiversity, Hungary
- International Sava River Basin Commission, Croatia
- Regional Development Agency Posavje, Slovenia
- World Wide Fund for Nature, Danube-Carpathian Programme, Romania
- Nature Conservation Movement Sremska Mitrovica, Serbia
- Regional Tourism organisation of Zakarpattia, Ukraine
Furthermore, a range of Associated Strategic Partners will be invited to join the project officially, once we get the green light to develop the Full Application. Especially the involvement of these Associated Strategic Partners is important for broad dissemination.
Heritage protection through ecotourism
The Danube region holds important sites for human settlement and economic activities, while rivers form green corridors and biodiversity hotspots. Especially in such areas of high economic interest, we should aim to protect natural and cultural heritages more efficiently. We can do this by raising awareness on the value and ecosystem services these rivers provide to locals and visitors. Furthermore, ecotourism can help promoting ecological conservation and other ecosystem service benefits.
Within the Danube region, you find large differences in economic status of countries, all rich with natural and cultural heritage. Therefore, there is a need to develop transnational approaches to sustainable heritage use and local development. For example, sustainable ways of tourism make visiting heritages more attractive, while locals benefit of it.
Over the next three to six months, this project idea will be evaluated by the Joint Secretariat. More news will follow!