Situation in Eastern Europe and Russia

From WaterWiki.net

Jump to: navigation, search

The UN classification of 'Eastern Europe' consists of Belarus, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Moldova, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Ukraine and Russia

Some of these countries also fall under new-EU member states /neighbour states, so also see the article on Situation in the new EU-Member/Neighbour States


Contents

Overview of Transboundary/Shared Water Bodies & Resources in this sub-region

Among the countries of the Central and Eastern European sub-region (for the purposes of the report, this includes the countries of Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia), Slovenia is richest in water, Estonia and Latvia are also well-endowed in water resources. In contrast, the Czech Republic, Poland and — on the basis of the internal resources — Hungary feature much lower water availability, In the dry years, water availability in these countries may be even in the order of 1000 m3/capita, which is usually, considered a limit below which water “scarcity” begins. Hungary is in a peculiar situation — it is rich in waters if all surface water resources are considered (about 10,000 m3/capita per year), but the estimate is much lower if only runoff generated. Source: Water for the 21st Century: Vision to Action — Central and Eastern Europe

Under USSR, centralised planning was a key feature of the social, political and economic structure and water bodies and water resources were also managed centrally. With the collapse of USSR, and formation of the independent states, management of the water-bodies became the responsibility of national and local agencies. While under USSR shared-bodies of the independent states were managed by a central authority, a need for transboundary water management was felt after the collapse of USSR. Some of the water-sharing and transboundary agreements that were signed under USSR were held valid, while new ones were required for others.

According to the Global Water Partnership [1] the implementation of the European Union's Water Framework Directive (WFD) is the most burning issue for governments dealing with water issues in the Central and Eastern European sub-region. The Framework Directive seeks to introduce comprehensive river basin management and establish environmental protection across Europe. New instruments for water management have been introduced such as ecological and holistic water status assessment approach, river basin management planning, and public information and consultation.


Major Transboundary River Basins in this sub-region

Basin Name Countries in the basin Percent area of country in basin (%)
Danube

Romania

Hungary

Austria

Serbia and Montenegro

Germany

Slovakia

Bulgaria

Bosnia and Herzegovina

Croatia

Ukraine

Czech Republic

Slovenia

Moldova

Switzerland

Italy

Poland

Albania

28.93

11.74

10.32

10.31

7.47

5.77

5.17

4.83

4.54

3.75

2.59

2.18

1.76

0.32

0.15

0.09

0.03

Daugava

Byelarus

Latvia

Russia

Lithuania

48.14

34.38

16.11

1.38

Dnieper

Ukraine

Belarus

Russia

57.97

24.19

17.83

Dniester

Ukraine

Moldova

Poland

75.44

24.52

0.05

Don

Russia

Ukraine

87.23

12.76

Elancik

Russia

Ukraine

71.32

28.68

Kogilnik

Moldova

Ukraine

57.82

42.18

Lava/Pregel

Russia

Poland

74.00

3.84

Narva

Russia

Estonia

Latvia

Byelarus

53.20

34.09

11.13

1.57

Neman

Belarus

Lithuania

Russia

Poland

Latvia

46.13

43.97

5.30

4.21

0.36

Oder/Odra

Poland

Czech Republic

Germany

Slovakia

84.20

8.38

6.33

1.09

Prohladnaja

Russia

Poland

76.90

23.10

Sarata

Ukraine

Moldova

63.90

36.05

Vistula/Wista

Poland

Ukraine

Belarus

Slovakia

Czech Republic

87.45

6.55

5.03

0.96

0.01

Volga

Russia

Kazakhstan

Belarus

99.77

0.14

0.08

Source:Transboundary Freshwater Dispute Database [2]


Other transboundary water bodies and basins


Major bilateral agreements and regional cooperation

Belarus
  • With regards to transboundary water management, since 1992, some agreements with Poland have been reached on water quality issues and navigation on the Western Bug River.
  • Belarus has not succeeded in reaching an agreement with neighbouring countries on sharing water from international rivers.


Czech Republic
  • Talks with Poland on the content of a new agreement, held Nov. 28-29 and Dec. 12-14, 1994.
  • Convention between the governments of Czechoslovakia and Poland on water management on boundary watercourses, signed in 1958; still in effect.
  • Agreement between the CSSR and Austria on water management issues on boundary watercourses, signed Dec. 7, 1967. Protocol on Cooperation to the agreement signed in 1993. The agreement was endorsed by the Czech Republic.
  • Agreement between the governments of the CSSR and the German Democratic Republic on cooperation in water management on boundary watercourses, signed Feb. 27, 1974. The German government does not currently recognize the agreement; negotiations are being prepared for a new agreement between the Czech Republic and Germany on cooperation in water management on boundary watercourses on the complete Czech-German border.
  • Appointment of commissioners for boundary watercourses between the CSSR and the FRG. The document (exchange of notes) is dated Dec. 11, 1981. The new agreement to be negotiated between the Czech Republic and Germany should supersede the existing practice of cooperation on boundary watercourses; protocols on cooperation should also be negotiated.


Estonia
  • Agreement between the governments of the Estonia and the Russian Federation on collaboration in the field of conservation and use of fish resources in the Peipsi/Chudskoe, L–mmi/Tjoploe and Pihkva/Pskovskoe lakes, May 4, 1994.
  • Agreement between Estonia and the Russian Federation on protection and rational use of the Narva River and Lake Peipsi/Chudskoe - Pihkva/Pskovskoe eco-systems, scheduled to be signed in September 1996.


Hungary
  • Treaty on the protection of the Tisza and its tributary rivers, signed in 1986; stepped in force after mutual ratification in 1986; published by the Law Reporter of the Ministry of the Environment, No. 1991/1.
  • Treaty on cooperation on the protection of the Danube River and on its sustainable use, signed in 1994; ratification is in process.


Poland
  • Polish and Czechoslovak treaty on fisheries and protection of fish in boundary waters, 1928.
  • Polish and Czechoslovak treaty on water economy in boundary waters, 1958. Executive agreement on water quality of major boundary watercourses, 1990.


Russia
  • International agreements During the Soviet period, an agreement concerning the use of water of the Amur River was concluded with China. Renegotiated and modified since 1991, the latest agreement was signed in 1996.
  • There are also agreements with other neighbours (Poland, Finland). These are general agreements, fixing the borders, including texts on crime issues, fishery, the prevention of pollution in river courses, etc. There have been no new international agreements on water sharing with the other countries of the FSU, and the inter-republic arrangements from the Soviet period are still in force.


Slovak Republic
  • Agreement between the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic and Poland on water management on transboundary water resources, signed in 1974; succeeded by the Slovak Republic.
  • Agreement between the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic and Hungary on the regulation of water management issues on transboundary rivers, signed in 1954; succeeded by the Slovak Republic.
  • Convention on Cooperation for Protection and Sustainable Use of the Danube River, Sofia, 1994.


Slovenia
  • Agreement on the protection of the Adriatic Sea from pollution, signed by the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and Italy Feb. 14, 1974; published in the Official Gazette of Yugoslavia, international agreements, No. 2/77.


Ukraine
  • An agreement between Moldova and Ukraine stipulates that Moldova may use water stored in the Curciugan reservoir, located on a tributary of the Dniester river basin. This tributary forms the border between Ukraine and Moldova before it reaches the Dniester.


Moreover, Soviet legislation regarding international water issues is still valid, which means that the agreements with Poland, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania -- as well as the internal regulations between former Soviet republics -- are still in force.


Source:REC [3]; and the WaterWiki country pages of the above countries



Major transboundary and regional projects

Joint River Management Programme

Three river basins - the Kura, Seversky-Donets and Tobol river basins - as well as the Pripyat river basin, were included in a single project: the Joint River Management Programme (JRMP), funded by the EU through the Tacis programme. The implementation period of the project was January 2002 - January 2005

The project dealt with four transboundary river basins covering seven countries:

  • Kura: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia
  • Seversky-Donets: Russia, Ukraine
  • Tobol: Kazakhstan, Russia
  • Pripyat: Belarus, Ukraine

The overall objective of the project was to support the prevention, control and reduction in the impact of adverse transboundary pollution caused by the quality of the four rivers selected.

Project outcomes: By the end of 2003, after a detailed assessment of the specific circumstances of each basin, technical assistance and training by EU experts had been given, focusing on transboundary zones. Equipment was then delivered in 2004 to specific laboratories and training was delivered by EU experts in laboratory management, quality assurance and quality control procedures, and data management, with a special focus on users information needs. Monitoring strategies were produced in each country and data exchange protocols between riparian countries were defined. Also, various public awareness activities were carried out, including press conferences and publications.

The laboratories selected for the project have now become centres of excellence and are helping to disseminate best approaches to water monitoring in their basins and regions.

See Project Website for more

Other transboundary and regional projects

Capacity for Water Cooperation Project

Caspian Environment Programme

Transboundary Dniester River Project

Further Readings - References - Links

“WWF - 2006 Floods in the Danube River Basin”

Water for the 21st Century: Vision to Action — Central and Eastern Europe

Effective Water Governance: Action through Partnership in Central and Eastern Europe

Water and Environment Issues in the Black, Caspian and Aral Seas

Global Water Partnership page on Central and Eastern Europe


Source(s)

All of the above


1293 Rating: 2.8/5 (30 votes cast)