The Scientific Council of the Danube Delta Biosphere Reserve Authority has confirmed the findings of a recent study that suggests potential resizing of the strictly protected areas in the Danube Delta. The study was commissioned by Danube Parks with the subsequent amendment of existing legislation to establish new borders of some protected areas expected in the short term.
The study took into account the evolution of these areas, as well as the needs of the local communities. Over the last 20 years (since the declaration and delimitation of the strictly protected areas in the Danube Delta Biosphere Reserve), some of these areas no longer serve the purpose for which they were created, and the designated protected species are no longer found in the field. So the study suggests an update to exclude less relevant areas and include more related sites, resulting in a total surface increase of the protected area.
The exclusion of an area is not necessarily a detrimental action. For example, in the Sfantu Gheorghe region, this will allow the local community to proceed with a plan to revive a former Turkish lighthouse and build an interactive museum for tourists promoting traditional cultural crafts and activities. Currently, tourists are not allowed in the area but the suggested changes will now permit certain local tourism activities.
The study is a first step in the legislative process, but public debates and the involvement of local communities and other stakeholders will hopefully make it a reality soon. It is a further positive example of how even more of the Danube Delta can be protected, whilst at the same time also provide the communities with better opportunities to develop local business.
Source: Danube Delta Biosphere Reserve Authority