GEF, UNDP Support Danube Countries in Adopting Joint River Management Plan

20 April 2011: With the support of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and the UN Development Programme (UNDP), Hungary, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia and Ukraine endorsed a management plan committing them to further cooperation in their efforts to protect the valuable environment of the Tisza River Basin.

The Integrated Tisza River Basin Management Plan (ITRBM Plan) was developed with the support of a three-year UNDP/GEF project to encourage improved land and water management throughout the basin. The ITRBM Plan includes: an analysis outlining the pressures from pollution, river engineering works, floods and droughts; an overview of the status waters; and the measures needed to reach the objectives of the EU Water Framework Directive (WFD) by 2015.

The Tisza cooperation links the region to the EU Danube Strategy, a set of measures and policies for sustainable development in the Danube River Basin. The Tisza River is the longest tributary of the Danube. Its basin is the largest sub-basin of the Danube Basin and home to 14 million people in the five countries. According to GEF, the area is rich in biodiversity, providing habitats for many species no longer found in other parts of Europe. Many areas of the region, including nature reserves and national parks, are important ecological assets. [GEF Press Release]