Who we are

Origin and Purpose of the
Defend the Rivers of Stara Planina (Balkan Mountains) Movement
and why the site was named
Nova Stara Planina (New Balkan Mountains)

The movement to defend the rivers on Stara planina (Balkan Mountains) began back in the late 1980s when the residents of Temska and other villages opposed the plan to divert water from the Toplodolska River to the Zavojsko Lake. 

River Defence in the 1980s
In 2017

In 2017, the Ministry retook the initiative to put the river in a tube. As a response, the people who would later found the Defend the Rivers of Stara Planina (Balkan Mountains) movement staged a performance titled “River Prayer” at the river of Temištica. The performance attracted significant public attention and informed the general population of this issue.

At the beginning of 2018, a Facebook group was formed with the aim of spreading awareness of the harmful consequences of small hydropower plants. Until December 2019, the group gathered over 85,000 members. Since then, the number of members has been continually growing. As a result, the group has become a significant channel for sharing opinions, experiences and all kinds of relevant information. 

Beginning of 2018
April 2019

In April 2019, we created another FB page, in which we published the most important information. Until December of the same year, the page reached around 8,500 followers. The Nova Stara planina website sprung from the DRSP movement. Nova Stara planina is also the formal name of the organisation represented by Aleksandar Jovanović Ćuta, which was founded for the official and institutional fight through specific river defence projects.

Do you support defending the rivers of Balkan Mountains?

Opengraph facebook ORSP Zvanična stranica pokreta Odbranimo reke Stare planine i udruženja Nova Stara planina O nama  sdvizacThe primary aim of the Defend the Rivers of Stara Planina (Balkan Mountains) movement (DRSP) is for the construction of small derivative hydropower plants (SHPPs) to be banned , not just at Stara planina but also throughout the entire territory of Serbia, because of extremely harmful impact they have on natural resources, as well as the quality of life of the local population.

Also, we advocate the use of solar and wind power and biomass energy for electricity production. The FB group with the same name is the place to discuss possible solutions and actions, share news, express attitudes and expert analyses and comment on various ideas and suggestions.

Topli DoSlika posle aktivizam
The members of the initiative are in touch with various international and domestic institutions and organisations. They also inform the media of various events related to SHPPs. The aim is to prevent the mass implementation of these harmful projects by means of constantly pressuring the institutions to act and take the necessary measures against further devastation.

The main activities of the group include collecting documentation, evidence and photographs, as well as seeking information of public importance regarding SHPPs from relevant institutions.

There is a significant amount of information on how certain regulations were disregarded during construction and the institutions that turned a blind eye to this. Many legal actions have been taken, and DRSP is also dedicated to providing support and information to other cities and groups in the struggle to prevent the SHPP construction.

Many people who don’t even know one another are taking part in this action. Even though they are at different locations, they all have common aims. Also, many of them remain away from the public eye but are actively engaged in river protection.

Despite numerous attempts, the movement has never been politicised.