This project will lay the basis for cross-border cooperation in the Lower Danube region for identifying significant land-based sources of pollution, improved monitoring of them, sharing information about them, and developing a strategy for reducing or eliminating their impacts. As the three countries concerned share the Danube River as a single hydrological unit, pollution in one part can quickly impact others, so it is in the interest of all partners to cooperate closely in this project.
In addition, investment will be made in a WWT system for Vylkove in Ukraine, a major tourism destination situated in the northern part of the Danube Delta and a significant source of organic pollution in the river. The project builds on a number of previous Phare and Tacis projects that were undertaken in the region over the last 15 years as part of the wider Danube Basin Pollution Reduction Programme (now incorporated in the Danube River Protection Convention), but which were focused on the individual country concerned.
During the course of the project, at least five reports will be published concerning the sources of soil and water pollution (including hazardous waste storage sites) in the Lower Danube region, a risk assessment of these sources, and a cross-border strategy for dealing with potential risks and emergencies from the pollution sources identified.
The overall objective of the project is to reduce the environmental impact of chemical dumps and wastewater discharges in the Lower Danube region as well as enhance environmental monitoring of soil and water pollution and make the information publicly available.
The specific aims are:
• To improve knowledge of the current state of chemical dumps and wastewater discharges in the Lower Danube region and establish priorities on how to reduce or eliminate them;
• To reduce pollution of the Danube from wastewater discharges; and
• To increase public awareness about sources of soil and water pollution
The four components of the project are
1 Inventory and assessment of sources of pollution affecting land and waters
2 Wastewater treatment infrastructure
3 Long term monitoring and risk assessment of pollution sources
4 Public Information Service on Pollution Sources
The project will deliver the following improvements for the inventory, assessment and remediation of anthropogenic sources of pollution in the Lower Danube Region of Ukraine, Romania and the Republic of Moldova:
• GIS created of sources and types of soil and water pollution in the Lower Danube region;
• WWT facilities established in Vilkovo, capable of treating 900 m3 / day, expanding the coverage from 1,200 to about 8,200 people;
• Equipment for monitoring and reducing pollution procured, installed and operational;
• Regional Centre for Ecological Studies set up in Odessa;
• Design of a Centre for Management of Hazardous Waste in Chisinau;
• Risk assessment undertaken for sources of soil and water pollution in the project area;
• Cross-border strategy for remediation of high risk sources of pollution formulated and put in place;
• Public Information Service web site operational;
• At least 400 stakeholders participated in project workshops, seminars and conferences, raising awareness concerning issues of soil and water pollution.