Target: The Ministry of Sustainable Development and Tourism of Montenegro
Goal: Ignore pressures to develop luxury resorts that will disturb protected wetlands.
Tivat Saline was recently designated as Montenegro’s second Wetland of International Importance, along with the country’s portion of Lake Skadar. By signing the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands, Montenegro has agreed to conserve this small coastal strip of Tivat Bay. However, future touristic development of luxury resorts may threaten this area with construction plans that are ecologically detrimental.
Tivat Saline is an important stopover along the Adriatic Flyway for migratory birds such as common cranes, ospreys, Eurasian curlews, greater flamingos, black-tailed godwits, and pygmy cormorants. Birds stop to rest and feed in the salt marshes. Endangered reptile and amphibian species are also supported on this site, along with unique vegetation. With its rich biodiversity, it is no wonder that the Ramsar Convention has designated Tivat Saline as a Special Flora and Fauna Reserve and as an Important Bird Area.
The Ramsar Convention is one of the most important international habitat agreements that addresses the protection of biodiversity. The convention works to halt the destruction of wetlands supporting migratory waterfowl and other vulnerable species, and also recognizes scientific, economic, cultural, and recreational values of wetlands. Countries who sign the convention still retain all decision making power, which is effective in fostering stewardship, but adequate management of these areas is not guaranteed.
Conservation measures must be continuously monitored to make sure that agreements are being carried out, especially in the case of development where a breach of promise against the environment may lead to damage that cannot be reversed. Encourage Montenegro to take the most sustainable approaches as they prepare a management plan for these special wetlands.
Dear Ministry of Sustainable Development and Tourism of Montenegro,
I wish to congratulate your country for signing the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands to protect a second wetland ecosystem. By signing the habitat convention, Montenegro has emphasized that wetlands and their multitudes of individual species must be protected. As a steward of this site of global importance, you are urged to ignore touristic pressures for development that would interfere with protecting Tivat Saline’s unique biological communities for future generations.
Citizens of Montenegro deserve to enjoy the ecosystem services that Tivat Saline provides. A nation’s dedication to protecting its natural resources demonstrates its determination to protect the well-being of its people. I encourage Montenegro to protect the abundance of wetland wildlife by preparing a management plan that does not allow for development that will disturb this site.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: psvrusso via Flickr