Eastern Europe Demonstration


  • The East Europe Demonstration Region occupies the territory of the Dniester, the Prut, the Lower Danube (from Prut to the Black sea) and the triangle area between the Dniester, Prut and lower Danube. The region links the Ukraine, Moldova and Romania. The key issues for this region is a general lack of reactive nitrogen (Nr) (in comparison to the 1980’s), and increasing nitrogen pollution to freshwaters and marine systems. The efficacy of nitrogen management within the region has been impacted by political and technical problems, including legislation flaws, land-use violations, and poor management of water resources.
  • One of the core issues is nutrient accumulation in the Black Sea; the largest anaerobic isolated water basin in the world. Excess N and phosphorus (P) compounds are discharged from the three main rivers in its basin; the Danube, the Dnieper and the Dniester. All three rivers are transboundary: the Danube (19 countries), the Dniester (Ukraine, Moldova and Poland) and the Dnieper (Russia, Ukraine, Belarus). The main source of organic pollution to the rivers in the region is the discharge of untreated or partially treated wastewater from settlements, industry and agriculture. Ineffective soil management practice and excess fertiliser application, which often violates fertilizer application schemes, has resulted in leaching of N in runoff increasing N concentrations in surface waters.

Role in Towards INMS

  • The INMS project provides an opportunity to increase awareness of these core issues and develop recommendations to reduce nutrient losses, for range of stakeholders including governmental organizations, private sector, academia, civil society organizations and UN agencies. Recommendations are being developed update current legislation (in Ukraine and Moldova) in line with the Water Framework Directive (WFD), Nitrate Directive (ND), Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD). It is necessary to develop guidelines, conventions and agreements that will govern all aspects concerning nutrient management and the health of the environment for the Dniester River Basin.
  • The East Europe demonstration region focuses on better understanding N flows within the region and identifying opportunities to improve N management across sectors. Areas of focus include:

    • N delivery from municipal untreated, partially treated and treated waste water discharge into the rivers and the Black Sea

    • N delivered in surface run-off from agricultural lands

    • Atmospheric N emissions from wetland burning/fires

    • N interaction and exchange in wetlands (excluding burning and fire events)

    • Soil management practice


  •  To achieve the main objectives of the project, ‘to reduce the negative impact of reactive nitrogen on ecosystems and improve understanding of the global nitrogen cycle’, test management practices are being developed at the regional, national and local levels. In the Eastern European demonstration region all nitrogen flows are considered so sources, paths and sinks can be quantified.
  • The work of this demonstration is supporting Output 3.1: A demonstration activity which delivers conclusions refining approaches to national/regional assessments and improving understanding of regional N cycle by addressing: Case 3: Regions with transition economies. This demonstration area is the only one to address Case 3 and takes into account the challenges posed by this situation.

For more information on the partners that are part of this Regional Demonstration please see our Regional Case Study Partners page.