Biologist Călin Dejeu, from Romania, recently approached the European Wilderness Society with the proposal to include the River Râul Alb, Romania, to the European Wilderness Network in the category WILDRiver. He formally applied for the Râul Alb WILDRiver European Wilderness Society Quick-Audit.
The River Râul Alb is a rare example of an undamaged river. It resides in the Southern Carpathian, where it spans from Retezat National Park down to the Hateg Country Dinosaurs Geopark.
The WILDRiver Nomination
The River Râul Alb is now in the process of preparing for the WILDRiver nomination. The next step will be the WILDRiver Quick Audit to check if this river fits to the WILDRiver Quality Standard. This nomination launched a process which could create, together with the already audited Wilderness in Retezat National Park, a large piece of Wilderness in Romania. This process will be able to show also the potential link between existing the Wilderness and the WILDRiver.
“The Râul Alb WILDRiver is located in the Southern Carpathians. This Mountains are currently under serious threat due to intensive sanitary logging, mineral extraction, roads and hydropower developments. Despite this, the area still harbours a huge natural heritage with Wilderness, WILDRivers and WILDForest. International recognition of Râul Alb River could encourage local authorities to improve the protection of this unique river”
– Călin Dejeu, member of the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas.
The Râul Alb River
The River Râul Alb is a 22 kilometre long, well-preserved river. The river represents one of the last ecologically complete rivers in Europe, which runs through a valley in the Carpathian Mountains. The spring of the river is high in the alpine meadows. The river then crosses the tree line, and penetrates through dense, partially old-growth conifer, and later broadleaf, forest. Leaving the mountains the river passes through agricultural landscape. In this section the river is surrounded by a gallery of alluvial forest. Following this the River Râul Alb flows through 2-3 villages after which its mouth meets the Strei River.
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The River Râul Alb is located at the territory Retezat National Park and Hateg Country Dinosaurs Geopark