Friday, 23 December 2011

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Study tour in Bulgaria

One of the key activities of the project "EU environmental policies and strategies" was held last week in Bulgaria, and was attended by members of DEM member groups as well as farmers from the region Ratkova Skala. The point of this 6-day event was a study tour that enables participants to have indoor and on location sessions about Natura2000 and farming practices and policies in several regions in Bulgaria.

Lecture in Transhumance restoration and nature-friendly farming (Wen, 07.12.2011)

The lectures began in Sofia with Andrey Kovachev from Balkani Wildlife Society, who transferred a number of experiences and problems that Bulgarian NGOs met in the process of protecting areas and parks in the country. What followed was a visit to the National Park Rila and Pirin acompanied by on the road sessions by Dunchev Alexander,  a visit to Kresna Gora and accommodation in a bio hotel that produces its own organic food. The study tour continued with visiting farms, a presentation of the Bulgarian agri-environmental program in BIOSELENA, visiting a  local winery and so on. The tour ended in Sofia with a session with Vjara Stefanova who spoke of examples of rural development in Bulgaria.

Besepari Hills winery session (Thu, 08.12.2011)

Study tour map 

Thanks to Veronika for the photos, more coming soon!

Presentation - 03.12.2011

3rd of December 2011, meetings were held for the Project Steering Group and the Network for Policy creation within the project "Promoting agriculture with high natural values ​​and agri-environmental payments through civil society organizations in Macedonia." 

The purpose of these meetings was the presentation of the project results in the second year of its implementation, presentation of the draft policy measures that support agriculture in HNV areas where case studies made by Dr. Susanna Kratovalieva and activities will be implemented by the end of the project. Project leader Vjara Stefanova presented the proposed direct payments and rural development for the period of 2014 -2020 as a part of the Common Agricultural Policy of the EU. 
At the end of the meeting participants discussed the proposed policy measures that support HNV agriculture in areas that are focal in the case studies.

Upcoming activities to be implemented are:

- Preparation of a manual for High Nature Value farming ​​in Macedonia 
- involving all the key project results / conclusions in Macedonian and English 
- will be followed by another meeting of the Project Steering Group and the Network for Policy creation- Dissemination of project results 
- organizing round tables, press conferences, events 
- Communication campaign organized by the DEM and local NGO members, in order to promote the "hidden values" of traditional extensive agriculture in Macedonia.

Friday, 2 December 2011


On the 9th of November, Veles had the largest protest in its history. We gathered together on the Samarmaale Square and joined forces to show our revolt and disagreement with the decision to restart the smelting factory that has caused so much harm in the past. DEM was present with all of its members to show support to citizens of Veles. Enough poisoning, save Veles!

Friday, 4 November 2011

Protest against the smelting factory in Veles 09/11/2011

In the eighties, Veles' lead smelting factory marked the faiths of many younger generations who were affected by the poisoning of heavy metals. This smelter is the biggest enemy of the city, by some it is even called "Veles' Adolf Hitler". After 8 years of non- working, there was an announcement that the factory will restart its work. So, on the 9th of November, Veles Liberation Day, let's join citizens of Veles and victims of lead poisonings and help them in their struggle city to cast out this ruthless killer once and for all! DEM will support them by joining the march that starts in 5 PM at the Sarmaale Square in Veles, so JOIN IN: the smelting factory must not start working again!

More about the aftermath of the smelter in the film "Veles Kaputt" which is available on Youtube.
WARNING: explicit pictures and footage! CLICK HERE FOR THE FILM.


Monday, 31 October 2011

E-Learning course on CAP

For all interested to find out more about the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), Groupe De Bruges is organizing a free online course on CAP's history and political context.
The course is targeted for students of agriculture, agricultural economy, rural sociology, agronomy etc. Participants can register starting from November 1st 2011.

For more info, see the brochure.

Sunday, 30 October 2011

Training for building CSOs capacities on EU Nature- related policies

Our project's training took place from the 24th to the 28th of October in Grand Hotel, Valjevo, Serbia. Veronika Ferdinandova and Boris Erg from IUCN welcomed the participants and gave a brief introduction to the policies of focus.

The first day was centered around Ecological Networks, a concept presented by Lawrence Jones-Walters from ECNC. Ecological Connectivity was also discussed the second day together with Green Infrastructure, as well as the importance of EIA's and SEA's. Biotope held these sessions and also organized a role playing workshop that simulates the processes of EIA and SEA with participants acting as stakeholders. The third day was focused on NATURA2000 - concept, management and the general public. The following day Mark Redman spoke of the focal policy of DEM's part in the project, the Rural Development Policy and the CAP. There was a session about High Nature Value Farming as well as future policy developments, changes and new opportunities. Day 5 was set for an excursion to Valjevo mountains where participants would identify species and habitats and simultae the process of making a site of Community Importance or Special Protected Area.

DEM was present with participants from its member groups - Eko Misija and ED Zletovica,and participants came from other CSO's invited like Ekoskop, CEPROSARD, Greener Association for Green Society, Bivium, and Eko-Svest.

                                                   Workshop on HNV Farming in the Balkans
                                              NATURA2000 and Birds and Habitats Annexes

                                                            Field trip to Valjevo Mountains

Valjevo Mountains