People in the area of Ivaylovgrad Dam protest, the level drops again and fish die, water is used in energy and irrigation from Greece

How to balance its level, it is part of Bulgaria's energy system and provides water for our southern neighbor by 2024?

Climate / Bulgaria
3E news
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The water level in the Ivaylovgrad dam is falling, which is leading to the extinction of fish, which is a direct danger of an ecological catastrophe, environmentalists and fishermen warn. Fishermen have begun collecting and returning thousands of fish to the reservoir, and are protesting today, but have threatened to close roads if measures are not taken to improve the dam's condition. They insist that measures be taken because this has been happening for the last 4-5 years.

The local people around Ivaylovgrad and the settlements want to have better synchronization between the Ministry of Energy and the Ministry of Environment and Water (MoEW) in order to prevent another ecological catastrophe. The extinction of fish will reduce the biodiversity in the area, the extinction of white and black storks, vultures and other protected bird species, said today the participants in the civic presence near the village of Malki Voden. One of the participants asked the Minister of Environment and Water, who draws up the monthly schedule of the dam and asked him what has changed in the last 4-5 years in the climate - precipitation, snowmelt? It cannot endanger the population so much that the level is so low, "said Kiril Mitov, organizer of the protest, quoted by Nova TV.

According to the MoEW reports on the condition of the dam, its level continues to fall and is 71% of its total volume and 53% of its useful volume as of April 21 this year.

There was a similar problem with the dam last year. Then the Ministry of Environment and Water announced that in connection with the management of water in this dam, it was ordered by the then Minister of Ecology Asen Lichev to drop the instruction from the previous government to maintain the volumes of dams from the Arda cascade at 20% free volume. Ivaylovgrad Dam is part of the country's energy system and there is no priority provision of drinking and household needs under the Water Act. S

Last but not least, Bulgaria has an obligation to provide water for irrigation in neighboring Greece - it stems from the Agreement on the settlement of pending financial issues and the development of economic cooperation between the People's Republic of Bulgaria and the Kingdom of Greece. According to her, every year in the period May-September through the monthly schedules additional water volumes are released from the Ivaylovgrad dam for irrigation in Greece. The Bulgarian side is obliged to supply the Greek side with regulated water from the Arda River for irrigation of lands on Greek territory every year in the amount of 186 million cubic meters per year with 85% security for 60 years or until 2024. How will the issue be resolved and how endangered is the dam and the nearby settlements and tourism in them? We expect to find out from the dam management?

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