Mura-Drava-Danube (MDD)

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    In News

    • UNESCO has recently designated Mura-Drava-Danube (MDD) as the world’s first ‘five-country biosphere reserve’.

    About Mura-Drava-Danube (MDD)

    • It is a biosphere reserve which covers 700 kilometres of the Mura, Drava and Danube rivers and stretches across Austria, Slovenia, Croatia, Hungary and Serbia.
    • It is also called the “Amazon of Europe”.
    • The total area of the reserve is around a million hectares which makes it the largest riverine protected area on the continent.

    Source: Interreg Danube

    Significance 

    • Diverse Landforms: 
      • The reserve is home to floodplain forests, gravel and sand banks, river islands, oxbows and meadows.
    • Flora and Fauna: 
      • It is home to continental Europe’s highest density of breeding white-tailed eagles (more than 150 pairs). 
      • Many endangered species such as the little tern, black stork, otters, beavers and sturgeons are also found here.
      • It is also an important annual resting and feeding place for more than 250,000 migratory birds, according to WWF.
    • Population
      • Almost 900,000 people live in the biosphere reserve.

    Benefits

    • Recognition to Sustainable Environment Efforts
      • The new reserve represents an important contribution to the European Green Deal
      • It also contributes to the implementation of the EU Biodiversity Strategy in the Mura-Drava-Danube region.
        • Aim of the Strategy
          • To revitalise 25,000 km of rivers and 
          • To protect 30 percent of the European Union’s land area by 2030.
    • Push to Boost Sustainable Business Practices
      • MDD’s recognition was a mandate to all five countries to jointly advance the protection and revitalisation of the Mura-Drava-Danube area.
    • Cross Border Cooperation for Environment
      • The Interreg Danube Transnational Programme-funded Amazon of Europe Bike Trail project is an example of multinational efforts to promote eco-friendly practices.
        • This project is a long-distance cycling trail following the Mura, Drava and Danube river landscapes for over 1,250 km.
      • When booking this cycling adventure, part of the spending directly supports nature conservation initiatives in the region.

     

    Source: DTE