The Drini and Mati River Deltas (DMRD) are two of the three deltas on the northern Adriatic coast of Albania. DRMD represents a
complex and compound system of sandy belts, capes, bays, lagoons and island areas. They also harbour significant biodiversity
values in three types of habitats: marine, wetlands and non‐wetland habitats, including forests, shrubs, and open fields where
traditional agriculture is practiced. Biodiversity is one of the most important assets of Lezha region, in which DMRD lies. The Drini
Delta is an internationally recognized Important Bird Area, providing wintering grounds for the endangered pygmy cormorant and
over 70 other species of waterfowl and water birds. The Patok lagoon, within the Mati Delta, serves as an important feeding area for
globally endangered loggerhead turtles.
Climate change has the potential to undermine biodiversity conservation efforts in the DRMD’s protected areas, unless the system
accommodates uncertainty and management strategies are put in place to respond to climate‐related stress. According to Albania’s
first comprehensive vulnerability and adaptation assessment, conducted as part of the preparation of the First National
Communication (FNC), the DMRD is critically vulnerable to climate change and requires adaptation measures to be put in place.
Scenarios for Albania predict an annual increase in temperature of up to 3.6ºC, a decrease in precipitation of 12.5%, and
consequent reductions of water resources and arable land (due to soil erosion and alteration) by the year 2100. In the coastal
zones, an increase in sea surface temperature as well as sea level rise (SLR) of up to 61 centimetres is expected to place additional
stress on marine and littoral biodiversity as well as livelihoods of local communities. SLR, more frequent and intense floods,
frequent inundation, and submersion of low lying coastal areas could affect life cycles of various species and result in habitat loss
and fragmentation. Rising temperatures will also affect the composition and distribution of DRMD’s marine and terrestrial species.
There are no related resources for this project.
Financing AmountTotal amount: US$1,959,500 (as of July 2010); GEF (SPA): US$975,000; UNDP: US$60,000
Cofinancing TotalGovernment of Albania: $140,000; Government of Albania (parallel): $740,000; Regional Environmental Centre (parallel); $44,500
Communities in the Drini and Mati River Deltas in Albania.