22.07.2009 -

Danube-Drava-Mura Transboundary Biosphere Reserve: Scenarios for Integrated River Management. Belgrade and Novi Sad (Serbia), 23-24 July 2009

 The international workshop on the “Danube-Drava-Mura Transboundary Biosphere Reserve: Scenarios for Integrated River Management” will take place from 23-24 July 2009 in Serbia. The workshop is convened by UNESCO Office in Venice in cooperation with the Serbian Ministry of Environment, the Spatial Planning National Park ‘Fruška Gora’ and the Special Nature Reserve ‘Gornja Podunavlja.

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|GOALS| This workshop will discuss the possibility of establishing a Trans-boundary Biosphere Reserve (TBR) “Danube-Drava-Mura”, with the 5 countries concerned (Austria, Slovenia, Hungary, Croatia and Serbia) to better frame the already existing national initiatives and identify a joint ‘road map’ towards the preparation of a joint TBR nomination.

|RATIONALE| The Danube River Basin is Europe's second largest river basin and it includes the territories of 19 countries. The ecosystems, of this most international river basin, are highly valuable in environmental, economic, and social terms. The trans-boundary “Danube – Drava – Mura river corridor” consists of free-flowing lower reaches of the Drava and Mura rivers and some stretches of the Danube river. Trans-boundary Biosphere Reserves - as developed within the UNESCO Man and Biosphere (MaB) Programme and further on recalled on the occasion of various international meetings devoted to the territories concerned - provides a tool for integrated trans-boundary management, through an integrative function-driven zoning. Additionally, TBR is an officially recognized international designation, serving the purpose of accommodating a mosaic of land use patterns and planning regimes. Having a Trans-boundary Biosphere Reserve “Danube – Drava – Mura” in place, would embody the commitment of the five countries of contributing to the Madrid Action Plan (MAP) implementation while applying the CBD ecosystem approach and supporting the compliance to the EU nature conservation related directives.

|METHODOLOGICAL APPROACH| In order to better cope with the complexity of the issues related to the designation of the “Danube – Drava – Mura” TBR, participants will be guided during plenary sessions through the following discussion steps: a) a quick review of the major steps already taken by the five countries concerned in terms of: protection and sustainable development promotion; b) a facilitated discussion on how to better design a set of transboundary initiatives for a joint UNESCO TBR designation; c) a guided road map definition, identifying the next steps to be committed with; d) a joint commitment to implement a final and shared road map. |PARTICIPATION| Participants (by invitation) will be selected according to the following representing stakeholders’ groups: a. UNESCO MAB Committees (one representative per country), b. Ministries in charge of Protected Areas, Physical Planning and/or Regional Development (one representative per country); c. International organizations that have been specifically involved with the DDM river corridor integrated protection (ICPDR, Euronatur, WWF, IUCN, and Sava River Commission).

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Contact : Giorgio Andrian at g.andrian@unesco.org<//font> Photo credit : UNESCO/G. Andrian From vision to action towards a transboundary Danube-Drava-Mura Biosphere Reserve<//font>




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