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News Macedonia: UNDP-GEF Project Restores Prespa Lake Ecosystem

The UN Development Programme (UNDP), with funding from the Global Environment Facility (GEF), has collaborated with the Municipality of Resen in Macedonia to restore the Prespa lake ecosystem. The project has raised awareness about environmental concerns, helped farmers to adopt more sustainable farming practices and developed a comprehensive plan for the future management of the watershed.

Prior to the project intervention, farmers in the Prespa lake region used high levels of fertilizers and pesticides, and regularly dumped apples in the water. These farming practices, in combination with erosion, and an absence of a management system to treat waste and wastewater, polluted the lake and posed a threat to the over 2,000 species of birds, fish and mammals in the region. The project aimed to change these practices and raise awareness about environmentally-friendly agriculture practices through a model orchard, which demonstrated the benefits of reduced fertilizer and pesticide use. Farmers now use 30% less pesticides each season and save money by using more efficient irrigation and pest control practices.

The project involved farmers in identifying and addressing different pressures on the lake region. This experience will now be applied to a new, six-year project by UNDP and the Municipality of Resen, with the support of the Swiss Development Cooperation, which will implement the recommendations of the 2012 Prespa Watershed Management Plan.

This project aims to continue to teach farmers eco-friendly ways of fertilizing and irrigating their land. It will also plant trees to reforest the area and combat erosion and introduce wetland restoration techniques to filter the water and control floods. The project is also implementing a “Lake Monitoring System and Management System,” with the broader aim of improving water quality and maintaining long-term ecosystem health.

Contact information UNDP (email:
News type Inbrief
File link
Source of information IISD
Geographical coverage Macedonia,
News date 28/03/2013
Working language(s) ENGLISH