Bordered by Bulgaria, Georgia, Romania, Russia, Turkey and Ukraine, the Black Sea and its surrounding areas are marked by majestic scenery and a rich cultural and natural heritage.
This includes not just the sea itself, but the Danube River Delta
and Carpathian Mountains
as well. The region's waters, coastlines, flooplains and mountains are home to an incredibly diverse range of wildlife and habitats.
Bears, wolves and lynx inhabit the old growth forests. In the Black Sea, one still finds bottlenose dolphins and about 180 species of fish, including tuna, anchovy, herring, mackerel and the famous white sturgeon. Monk seals, sadly, have become extinct here.
The region’s natural wealth, however, is under severe pressure.
Pollution, oil spills, marine traffic, invasive species and overfishing threaten the sea and rivers. Excessive and illegal logging, intensive agriculture and unsustainable coastal development are problems on land.
The region is also vulnerable to climate change
, which could add to the stress the region's natural systems are already under.
Today, the Black Sea region is at an environmental crossroads. It can continue on the path of neglect or it can move towards a more sustainable future.
In response to these challenges, WWF is working with local communities, organizations and governments to promote the conservation, restoration and sustainable management of the Black Sea region for the benefit of people and environment.