Recognising environmental and social responsibility as two fundamental values, Slovenia’s largest producer of electricity Dravske Elektrarne Maribor (which operates as part of the HSE Group) has developed several projects together with the Maribor City Municipality for the sustainable development of the Drava River.
“The principal activity of the company Dravske Elektrarne Maribor is the safe and reliable production of electricity,” commented Andrej Tumpej, director of the company. “In accordance with the concession contract for the energy use of the Drava River, we are obliged to maintain the river banks and, if we are able to upgrade them in the process so that they look nicer and are more useful for locals and tourists, we will always do so if we are able to.”
In particular, on the left side of the reservoir of the Mariborski Otok Hydro Power Plants, the company, as the contractor of the work, has been tasked with including in the development the ecological functions of the lake, landscape and functional aspects and, in addition to energy use and nature protection, taking into account the possibility of improving the tourism, sport and recreational use of the lake.
A “natural amphitheatre” has thus been created on the left bank of the Drava River, consisting of nine eight-metre benches intended as a stopping place for cyclists and a venue for other visitors to peacefully observe the Drava and what is happening on it.
Furthermore, in a bid to pursue the development of new activities without hampering the basic water management and energy activity, Dravske Elektrarne Maribor started developing a service path that will provide a safe path for cyclists – as part of the Drava Cycling Trail – and pedestrians.