Protection and Sustainable Use of the Dinaric Karst Aquifer System

Project Summary

Project Objective: The proposed project is the first ever attempted globally to introduce sustainable integrated management principles in a transboundary karstic freshwater aquifer of the magnitude of the Dinaric Karst System. At the global level the project aims at focusing the attention of the international community on the huge but vulnerable water resources contained in karst aquifers (carbonatic rock formations), which are widespread globally, but poorly understood. The Dinaric Karst Aquifer System, shared by 4 countries and one of the world’s largest, has been identified as an ideal opportunity for applying new and integrated management approaches to these unique freshwater resources and ecosystems. At the regional level the project’s objectives are to (i) facilitate the equitable and sustainable utilization of the transboundary water resources of the Dinaric Karst Aquifer System, and (ii) protect the unique groundwater dependent ecosystems that characterize the Dinaric Karst region of the Balkan peninsula. These objectives are expected to be achieved through a concerted multi-country effort involving improvement in scientific understanding, the building of political consensus around key reforms and new policies, the enhanced coordination among countries, donors, projects and agencies, and the consolidation of national and international support.

Project Details

GEF Project ID
Project Type
Full-size Project
Focal Areas
Funding Source
GEF Trust Fund
Implementing Agencies
United Nations Development Programme
Executing Agencies
GEF Period:
GEF - 4
Approval Fiscal Year:


Project Preparation Grant Amount
200,000 USD
GEF Project Grant
2,160,000 USD
Co-financing Total
3,403,570 USD
GEF Agency Fees
236,000 USD
Total Cost 5,763,570.00 USD

Project Timeline

Received by GEF
09 May 2008
Preparation Grant Approved
21 May 2008
Concept Approved
01 Jun 2008
Project Approved for Implementation
04 Jan 2010
Project closed
31 May 2015