Ada Sostaric intervista per l'Osservatorio i responsabili dell'Istituto idro-meteorologico della Serbia, e ci racconta la situazione ecologica del Danubio. Testo in inglese.

07/11/2001 -  Ada Soštarić

The thing that is most important when analysing the quality of water in the river Danube is the establishing of the optimal functioning of real- time monitoring. The Danube, the second largest river in Europe>, has been monitored constantly by all the countries through which this river flows. In Serbia, "Hidro- meteroloski zavod Srbije" was among the organisations that were monitoring the quality of water throughout last thirty-five years. One of the things that is dangerous and is constantly causing degradation in the quality of the water in the river Danube (its Serbian part), is the fact that the capacity of the accumulation of Djerdap is not big enough. Therefore, the river on that section flows slower. At the same time, two of the three nuclear electrans built on Danube are situated in this section. This fact is bringing this section into the group of hotspots regarding pollution with the various sorts of nuclear materials.

The "Hidro- meteroloski zavod Srbije " has formed a whole network of stations monitoring the ground water and rivers. In 1965, the monitoring was begun by the establishment of the network of spots (stations) monitoring the quality of water. Law also backed this kind of monitoring on the quality of water, i.e. by the decree of the Government of the Republic of Serbia. The main part of this decree forms the Programme of systematic monitoring on the water quality.Here are the towns listed in which this monitoring on the quality of the water in the river Danube is being examined:

Bezdan, Apatin, Bogojevo, Novi Sad, Slankamen, Centa, Zemun, Beograd, Pancevo, Smederevo, Banatska Palanka, Veliko Gradiste, Dobra, Tekija, Brza Palanka, Radujevac.

A bilateral co-operation with the neighbouring countries, interrupted during the sanctions period in Yugoslavia, was renewed with Hungary in 1997, and with Romania in 1998. This monitoring on the quality of the water in the river Danube, in the domain of the bilateral co- operation, is being done on the three spots (profiles): Bezdan (with Hungary), Banatska Palanka I Radujevac (with Romania).

In the period from 1996- 2000, according to the results of the monitoring conducted by "Hidro- meteroeloski zavod, the water in the river Danube did not fulfil the minimum of the expected quality. The decree proscribing the category of the waters, proscribed that the Danube needs to be in category II. However the Danube was always in the category III, or sometimes-even lower.
"Hidro- meteroloski zavod" said that no changes were noticed in 1999, during the NATO strikes, in the quality of the water in the river Danube.

C. Maximovic, from Imperial College of STM, London, UK, and Faculty of Civil Engineering, Belgrade, YU, stressed at the ENRY conference that not only during the NATO bombardment, but also during last ten years, water sources have been degraded due to the lack of funding and neglect on all levels of monitoring. Maximovic also said that the concentration of heavy metals is more present in Novi Sad and Pancevo, and lessens when going to the south.

Still it is very hard to find out and hear the real facts related to the percentage of pollution in the river Danube. Maybe it would be best to quote Jasmina Vujic, co- president of the ecological conference ENRY, who said that until last year, which brought democratic changes, a lot of things were hidden from the people The most common answer offered from authorities at that time was, "everything is OK, there is nothing to be measured". She stressed that a lot of important statistical studies are not done.
Vujic concluded by saying that people here have been afraid that if it is said that there is some pollution, then no one would not want to buy anything from Yugoslavia. This needs to be changed, and all citizens must be informed, and fully aware about the real state of environment around them.

* Interview held with two employees from "Hidro- meteroloski zavod Srbije":
Ljubisa Denic, chief of the control of the quality of waterSvetomir Mijovic, analyst of the quality of water.

See also:

Government of the Republic of Serbia

Novi Sad

FRY: la prima conferenza sulla ricostruzione ecologica della Jugoslavia