The Danube – Day is a celebration of healthier rivers following 24 years of ground-breaking international cooperation. In June and July, festivals along the Danube, public meetings, educational events, enjoyments pay tribute to the Danube rivers, their inhabitants and celebrate the beauty of the river’s nature, which is always around us, even if we not always recognize its assets.
The topic of the conference organised by the EUSDR PA4 and PA5 Team and supported by the DTP-JOINTISZA project had a special highlight in 2018 since the World Environmental Day in 5 June 2018 also addressed the problem of plasctic waste pollution.
However mostly marine litter is mentioned as a special problem, we should not forget about the rivers, which can transport high amount of plastic waste during flood events, when flash floods wash away waste from floodplain areas and carry it from the illegal disposals.
To call the attention to the grwoing problem of solid waste - and plastic pollutions in the waters, the organises invited experts from all around Europe asking them to introduce the situation regarding this topic in their area. The conference was opened by Mr Gábor Jenei, National Cooridnator of the EU Strategy for the Danube Region and by Mr Balázs Horváth, manager of the JOINTISZA project and coordinator of priority area on "water quality". Following the opening notes, experts from Slovenia, Austria, Ukraine, Hungary and IUCN have introduced their experiences and thoughts about this issue and additionally a presentation about the problem of microplastics was also presented.
In the frame of the roundtable dicussion, which followed the valuable plenary session of presentations, the experts and presenters gave their view and thought on the most important policy actions, which should be done in national and international level and they also introduced their favorite awareness raising campaigns. the round table discussion was moderated by Mr Gergely Hankó (Managing Director of the Hungarian Association of Environmental Enterprises).
The conference was closed with a movie called "Message in the bottle", which is explaines about the more and more well-known awareness raising campaign of "Plastic CUP" event.
The event was moderated by Mr Viktor Oroszi, senior expert of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, dealing with among others the tasks of priority area on "environmental risks".
The final agenda of the event can be downloaded from here.
The presentations of the event can be found here:
Global marine litter situation - KATALIN CZIPPÁN (IUCN, Chair, Commission on Education and Communication)
EU policy landscape to tackle plastic pollution - VIVIEN IFKA (Ministry of Agriculture)
Report on plastic waste status by the Adriatic Sea - UROŠ ROBIČ (Environmental expert, Institute for Water of the Republic of Slovenia)
Monitoring of microplastic pollution - GÁBOR BORDÓS (Wessling-Hungary)
Situation on the Danube: introduction of the PlasticFreeDanube project - SABINE LENZ (Research Associate, Institute of Waste Management, BOKU-University, Vienna, PlasticFreeDanube Project)
Situation in the Tisza River Basin - JOINTISZA project - DIANA HEILMANN AND VIKTOR OROSZI (Senior advisors, EU Strategy for the Danube Region Priority Area 4 & 5)
Ukrainian waste management strategy and feedback on the follow-up activities of the plastic waste related measures of the first Integrated Tisza River Basin Management Plan - OLENA MARUSHEVSKA (Senior expert, NGO "ZAKARPATTYA OBLAST BRANCH OF ALL-UKRAINIAN ECOLOGICAL LEAGUE”