In environmental and health terms, the Danube - Black Sea region suffers from very acute problems. The Danube is subject to pressure from irrigation, industry, fishing, tourism, power generation, navigation and not the least as the final destination of urban wastewater.
These intensive uses have created severe problems of water quality and quantity and drastically reduced biodiversity in the basin. The pollution ends up in the Black Sea and affects a very large area. This is why the EU is striving to make the countries of the region work closer together and is heavily involved in improving the state of environment in the region.
Under the Danube River Protection Convention (DRPC) and the Convention on the Protection of the Black Sea against Pollution (Black Sea Convention environment programmes have been drawn up defining strategies and identifying hot spots for which investment interventions are needed). The International Commission for the Protection of the Danube River (ICPDR) is implementing the DRPC and the Black Sea Commission is implementing the Black Sea Convention.
In November 2001 the DABLAS Task Force was set up in order to ensure a more efficient funding of projects and to provide a platform for co-operation on financing of water related investments in the region. The DABLAS Task Force comprises all major stakeholders to this end.
In April 2007 the European Commission put forward a Communication from the Commission to the Council and the European Parliament on the Black Sea Synergy. - A new regional cooperation initiative. This initiative was set up to complement existing policy and is intended as a flexible framework to ensure greater coherence and policy guidance. Environment is highlighted as one of the sectors where increased regional co-operation will be of added value.