For information only - not an official document

22 March 2018

On World Water Day, ICPDR emphasizes need for nature-based solutions in water management

VIENNA, 22 March (International Commission for the Protection of the Danube River) - On this year's World Water Day (22 March), the International Commission for the Protection of the Danube River (ICPDR) emphasizes the need for nature-based solutions in water management. The ICPDR is responsible for ensuring the sustainable and equitable use of waters in the Danube River Basin, and as such is committed to this year's World Water Day theme "Nature for Water" for the good of the 90 million people living in the Basin.

"At the centre of our activities in the Danube basin are human wellbeing and safety as well as good conditions for the environment," said ICPDR President Helge Wendenburg.

Water availability and supply

Following the 2015 droughts, the ICPDR has elaborated a report on the impact of droughts in the Danube Basin, the measures taken and lessons learned. The "2015 Droughts in the Danube River Basin Report" includes an overview on the main characteristics of the meteorological and hydrological situation during 2015. It also summarizes the main impact on water-related sectors and includes an overview of measures taken by the individual Danube countries.

The ICPDR is updating its Climate Change Adaptation Strategy, which aims to provide the foundations for a common, Danube-wide understanding of the future impact of climate change on water resources. The strategy will look at possible adaptation measures for water management, ecosystem-based measures and managerial measures such as the promotion of water-saving behaviour, technological measures such as the development of more efficient irrigation systems in agriculture, and different policy approaches in the Danube River Basin and its sub-basins. 

River Basin & Flood Risk management

In response to the danger of flooding, the ICPDR is engaged in a range of activities to manage flood risks. The ICPDR is a coordination platform for the implementation of the EU Floods Directive and for the preparation and update of the Danube Flood Risk Management Plan. Linking of flood risk management with the river basin management is one of the key goals of the ICPDR.

Wetlands are a lot more than just a source of natural beauty and a recreational destination for locals. They offer a wide range of ecosystem services. They act as retention areas during flood events, which demonstrates how they are an essential nature-based solution for safety and risk management in the Danube River Basin. In addition, wetlands contribute to the control of water quality and are important hotspots of biodiversity. Wetlands also support considerate forms of tourism, fisheries and other economic and social interests of local communities. The ICPDR has dedicated considerable efforts to the protection, restoration and creation of wetlands and reconnection of floodplains to the river system in the Danube River Basin.

"We encourage all to raise awareness for using nature-based solutions in water management this World Water Day and beyond," said President Wendenburg.

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For further information, please contact:

 Hélène Masliah-Gilkarov
Public Participation and Communication
ICPDR Secretariat at UNOV
Telephone: (+43-1) 26060-4373
Fax: (+43-1) 26060-5895
Mobile: (+43 676) 845 200 220
Email: helene.masliah-gilkarov[at]