2022 MPA Nominee
– Romanian Alpine Club

Mountain Protection, UIAA


“Sanitation of Lake Belis” is part of the long-term initiatives of the Romanian Alpine Club, Cluj Branch, aiming at concrete and sustainable measures to have cleaner mountains in Romania. This will be achieved through extensive awareness and sanitation actions, aimed at mountain waters and mountain areas with mountain tourist interest in Romania.

Expected implementation and outcomes

The ultimate goal is to raise awareness among the Romanian population and authorities about the sad reality of mountain waste. The project had two stages, 2-6 June, 2021 and 3-5 June, 2022 which consisted of extensive volunteer actions coordinated by over 100 members of the Romanian Alpine Club and resulted in the sanitation of the beautiful mountain lake Belis, located at 1000 m altitude, in the protected area of the Apuseni Natural Park. Over 300 volunteers in five days collected 7,200 bags of waste from the lake. This required over ten waste trucks and around 200 seats in kayaks, canoes or boats or land intervention on the cliffs near the lake. Story (in Romanian) and photos:


Climbing, mountaineering or outdoor sport focus

The project was aimed at hiking on steep areas around the lake and outdoor sport focus.

Best practices in mountaineering and mountain-based sports for mountain protection

Mountain water pollution can be the most serious form of environmental aggression in the mountain area, especially in the case of some lakes that represent the source of drinking water for some downstream cities, a situation in which Lake Belis is found. The waste is transported to the lake from the inhabited mountain areas, from high altitude. We want to fight and realise this among the factors that can stop the phenomenon and thus ensure the protection of the mountains.


The project has achieved its goals, a wide awareness campaign in which millions of people have learned about the sad reality of mountain waste and also rushed to sanitise the beautiful mountain lake, more than 7,200 bags of waste were collected in five days with 300 volunteers involved in 2021 and 2022.

To discover more about the UIAA Mountain Protection Award please click here.