The world’s biggest 2013 river research expedition concludes in Romania



Posted on 03 October 2013  | 
Some of the scientists taking part in the third Joint Danube Survey.
Some of the scientists taking part in the third Joint Danube Survey.
© ICPDREnlarge
The international team of scientists of the "Joint Danube Survey” river expedition have completed their six-week assignment, sampling water, animal and plant life from the entire Danube River. Now a period of intensive data analysis follows as part of the biggest river expedition worldwide in 2013.

The Joint Danube Survey 3 (JDS3) completed the sampling period with a celebratory closing event in Tulcea, Romania. For weeks and months to come, scientists will analyse the samples of water and other data that was collected from the research vessels. Analyses will now look at animals and plants, chemical substances and sediment, larger fish as well as microscopic bacteria. Laboratories across Europe will carry out parts of these analyses, with complete results due to be published next autumn. 

"The Joint Danube Survey has drawn time, money and know-how from 14 Danube countries. It is a demonstration of how cooperation in water management can add value for every party involved", says ICPDR President Ermina Salkicevic-Dizdarevic. "An effort as big as JDS3 could not be undertaken by any single Danube country alone. United, however, the ICPDR members realised this river expedition and made it an outstanding success."

This success was also reflected in public events: in nine cities along the Danube, press conferences and outreach activities were organized, resulting in wide-spread media attention and enthusiastic crowds welcoming the JDS3 ships at the Danube river banks from Regensburg in Germany to the Danube Delta. This interest helps the ICPDR to promote the scientific objectives of the JDS3 among a broader audience, as well as experts, such as researchers working in the field of freshwater ecology. Most importantly, however, the findings will feed directly into the so-called “Danube River Basin Management Plan”, a work schedule which addresses environmental problems related to water.

"JDS3 will contribute data to many scientific publications for the coming months", says Ivan Zavadsky, ICPDR Executive Secretary. "For us, however, the policy side is equally important. JDS3 is essential for putting the management plan for the Danube River Basin on a sound scientific foundation."

This management plan is developed by experts from all ICPDR members until 2015 and will be implemented over a period of six years thereafter.

The research of the Joint Danube Survey is conducted by an international team of 28 scientists, who took samples along 2,376 kilometres of the river. The JDS is carried out every six years – JDS1 took place in 2001 and JDS2 in 2007. Corporate partners, such as The Coca-Cola Company and Donauchemie, support the effort.

The Joint Danube Survey 3 is the world’s biggest river research expedition of its kind in 2013, the UN International Year of Water Cooperation. JDS3 catalyzes international cooperation from all 14 of the main Danube Basin countries and the European Commission, united through the International Commission for the Protection of the Danube River (ICPDR).
Some of the scientists taking part in the third Joint Danube Survey.
Some of the scientists taking part in the third Joint Danube Survey.
© ICPDR Enlarge
Media awaited the arrival of the research ships during the entire expedition.
Media awaited the arrival of the research ships during the entire expedition.
© ICPDR Enlarge

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