| Project objectives:
The work will be carried out using research elements of different nature:
I. Improvement of process understanding: This research, including literature and data review in combination with additional field work, will address
(a) the nutrient balance in the catchment with main emphasis on diffuse pollution (e.g. agriculture, air pollution) and the transport, retention and losses
of nutrients in the catchment (nutrient balances in case study regions),
(b) the transport, retention and losses of nutrients and silica along the Danube River and
(c) the functioning of the Western Black Sea ecosystem concerning the direct influence of riverine nutrient and silica discharges.
II. Mathematical models: Based on an improved process understanding, mathematical models will be improved, combined, and applied to quantitatively assess
nutrient fluxes from the Danube Basin along the Danube and the Delta to the Western Black Sea and to quantify the impact of these fluxes on the mixing zone of Danube
River in the Western Black Sea. This part will use
(a) the MONERIS-emission model based on a GIS data base,
(b) the Danube Water Quality Model (DWQM) for the description of the transport and transformation processes in the river system,
(c) the Danube Delta Model (DDM) for the quantification of nutrient transport in the Danube Delta and
(d) the Shelf Model for modelling the impact of the Danube load on the Western Black Sea. Based on these models the whole system can be considered as a complex
unit and scenarios can be developed as a basis for scenario evaluation.
III. Strategic planning: Consequently the project will be oriented towards elaboration of advise for future strategic planning on the catchment scale.
This part will include
(a) a method to establish comparable, basin-wide, periodic nutrient balances considering the national data availability and
(b) the evaluation of different solutions for future nutrient management strategies considering socio-economic developments in the Danube Basin.
In order to fulfil these objectives, DANUBS is expected to deliver profound knowledge on the sources, pathways and sinks of nutrients in a large river catchment
and on the demands of the Black Sea regarding an improvement of nutrient management in the Danube Basin. Quantitative models for calculating the fate of nutrients
in large river basins and in the receiving sea will be improved and combined concerning their application. Additionally results concerning the evaluation
of scenarios for future nutrient management under consideration of socio-economic consequences will be achieved.
The DANUBS research project will provide a really integrated approach to address the management of nutrient problems in ground and surface waters from point
and diffuse sources in the largest European river basin, the Danube basin, combined with an economic and social assessment of this problem. This intends to
stop the further deterioration and to improve the coastal zone water quality of the NW-Black Sea. DANUBS complements the STREAMES project and will contribute
to the ELOISE thematic projects network. Due to the complexity of the problem and to the scale of the river basin addressed the Consensus Evaluation Panel suggested
to perform the project over 4 years, instead of 3 years initially requested, without changes in the budget.