Campaign SAVE LATVIAN DUNES

Since regaining of Latvia’s independence both nature and culture uniqueness of the coast has been continuously endangered due to the insufficient state control and implementation of legislation on protection of natural habitats and preventing violations against the nature. On the other hand a serious problem is also the low level of environmental awareness of the general public and the lack of suitable and modern (nature friendly) tourism infrastructure sites along the coast of Latvia in the length of 500 kilometers.

Within this project new accessible green infrastructure sites were constructed with the work of volunteers and co-financing of the local municipalities. The project totally changed the attitude of the local municipalities towards the development of green accessible tourism infrastructure as a perfect solution to invite tourists and the same time to protect the coastal nature.

Project goal & objectives

  • To protect the unique coastal dune biotopes by building and renovating modern and accessible tourist infrastructure, which will help to redirect the flow of tourists away from the more vulnerable areas.
  • Infrastructure planning was accompanied by educational and informative activities such as joint clean-ups and planting activities. Thus, dune’s protection was tackled from three angles: infrastructure, public involvement and awareness raising.

Effects

  • The most visible effect of this project is the positive attitude and the change of thinking, leading to the real results from the involved local municipalities, which supported new infrastructure tourism sites even in larger financial amount as it was originally planned in the project. They committed to maintain the newly built nature sites at least for the 5 next years after the project’s end.
  • Contribution to the local economy by providing basis for the development of nature friendly tourism.
  • High level of involvement of the local stakeholders such as young people and NGOs

Outputs

  • 14 coastal tourist sites along the Gulf of Riga have been renovated and equipped with info signs, wooden trails, sitting opportunities, parking lots as well as ecological and accessible for handicapped people toilets.
  • 6 of those sites: Mersrags, Jurkalne, Salacgriva, Roja, Medze and Bernati have received the NaaC (Nature Accessibility Criteria) certification and flag
  • 3 pine tree planting & fastening of dunes actions, as well as 4 clean-up actions were carried out in cooperation with schools and NGOs
  • Large clean-up actions in the framework of Clean Games and Coast Watch projects
  • Educational activities in 13 schools in coastal areas as well as general public awareness activities on the state of endangered coastal biotopes and coastal biodiversity
  • Practical experience exchange activities such as study trips to Germany, Lithuania and Russia
  • Other study tours, seminars and the final conference had to be cancelled due to COVID-19 travel and meetings’ restrictions.

Impressions:

Beneficiary

Latvian Green Movement

Partners

  •  Latvian Ministry of Environment and Regional Development
  • Latvian Environmental Protection Fund
  • Apeirons NGO
  • coastal municipalities
  • administrations of the nature parks
  • Coalition Clean Baltic (SE)
  • Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (DE)
  • Coast Watch (IE)
  • Clean Games (RU)

    Project duration 

    2018-01-02 – 2021-03-31

    Budget

    total project budget: €240.500
    funding BaltCF: € 185.000