|Description||The transboundary water resources of this important sub-basin of the Danube are being seriously threatened by pollution from domestic, agricultural and industrial discharges, and by unsustainable land-water management practices aggravating the frequency and impacts of extreme climatic events (floods). This critical situation has been highlighted by the diagnostic assessments (Danube TDA1999 and TDA2006 ) conducted within the context of the GEF-EU coordinated efforts for the sustainable management of the Danube River Basin, which have led to the agreement on a Strategic Action Program (SAP) for the entire Danube basin. For the Tisza River Basin the SAP identifies the need of a coordinated regional effort to develop harmonized national and regional policies for integrated land and water management that would include actions to reduce nutrient discharges, thereby contributing to the overall goal of the rehabilitation of the Black Sea ecosystem. In response to TDA findings and to SAP agreements, the proposed project, building on the successful implementation of the GEF-UNDP Danube Regional Project and complementing other GEF and non-GEF ongoing initiatives in the region will:
(i) Accelerate, as part of the Danube SAP implementation process - and in line with the EU Water Framework Directive (WFD), the establishment of the Tisza River Management Plan, adopting Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM) principles and including measures for nutrient reduction, mitigation of hazards from toxics and to reduce impacts from extreme climatic events, such as restoring flood plain functions;
(ii) Promote the replication of the good practices in nutrient reduction demonstrated through GEF Investment Fund projects in the region (e.g. in Romania, Bulgaria etc).
(iii) Implement small-scale demonstration projects that will support these efforts towards reforms of environmental and natural resources governance, and serve as a learning experience for other larger scale pilot projects to be conducted as the Tisza RMP is implemented.
The project will hence contribute to the achievement of the goals of the Black Sea -Danube Strategic Partnership for Nutrient Reduction (GEF-World Bank - UNDP), advance the implementation of the EU Water Framework Directive, and more in general improve environmental sustainability, in line with Millennium Development Goal 7.|