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River works threatens the otter

13 Novembre 2023 | Non categorizzato

Researchers Romina Fusillo and Manlio Marcelli announced the discovery of the otter on the Aterno River, between Popoli and Vittorito.

This revelation was published in “Ecology and Evolution,” an international scientific journal, but it seems that the Abruzzo Region completely ignored this important information. Despite the essential role of otters in the river ecosystem, the Abruzzo Region approved heavy work along the Aterno River banks. The use of chainsaws and bulldozers by the Civil Engineering Corps threatens not only the otter but also other crucial elements of biodiversity, such as the Osmoderma eremita. LIPU, Stazione Ornitologica Abruzzese ONLUS, Salviamo l’Orso, and Altura joined forces to raise the issue to the Abruzzo Region and the Ministry of the Environment. The associations denounce the Civil Engineering Corps’ project, which seems to completely ignore the otter’s presence and other important naturalistic aspects.

Violations of Environmental Procedures: There is great concern about the lack of attention to mandatory environmental procedures. The Environmental Impact Assessment appears to have been drafted without the consultation of experts in natural sciences and presents glaring gaps in detecting fundamental data for biodiversity protection.

Sustainable Solutions: Researchers and associations emphasize that there are lighter and more economically viable alternatives to the current project for the protection of the biodiversity along the Aterno. Less invasive interventions, such as the removal of logs in the riverbed, could preserve the habitat without compromising hydrogeological safety.

Looking to the Future: A photograph of an otter captured by a camera trap in the project’s affected area demonstrates the importance of protecting these unique animals in their natural environment. Biodiversity is our common heritage, and together we can make a difference to protect it.