"Drought - Current Issues and Solutions" national briefing seminar was organized on 7 June 2017 in Bratislava at the Slovak Hydrometeorological Institute. The seminar took place within the framework of DriDanube project and was prepared by the project partners in Slovakia - Global Water Partnership Central and Eastern Europe (GWP CEE) and Slovak Hydrometeorological Institute (SHMÚ).
The aim of the national seminar was to discuss the current state and problems of drought management in Slovakia, as well as the needs of practitioners. The seminar was attended by representatives of various sectors ranging from agriculture, forestry, water management to nature conservation. The aim of the consultation was to bring diverse stakeholders affected by drought occurrence to one place (state administration, sectoral organizations, scientific community, and practitioners) and discuss the challenges they are facing and their possible solutions.
The briefing seminar’s agenda consisted of introductory presentations, discussions in small groups, as well as a final summarizing discussion involving all 40 participants in the plenary (photos).
Integrated Drought Management Programme and linkages to the previous rounds of national dialogues on drought - Mr. Tomas Orfanus, GWP Slovensko
DriDanube project, targets and activities – Ms. Jana Pangracova, GWP CEE/ DriDanube Communications manager & Ms. Livia Labudova, SHMU Project manager on national implementation in Slovakia
Action Plan on Drought Management in Slovakia, introduction of the process – Mr. Richard Muller, GWP CEE, Regional Coordinator/ Member of the Drought Action Plan task force
The discussions focused mostly on the current drought management problems. The irrigation systems, an important measure to combat the drought, were identified as one of the most problematic issues since the mechanism of their renting is complicated and financial costs associated with repair and operation are relatively high. The attendees agreed on the importance of investing more attention into the soil itself in order to allow capturing more water in the soil profile. All experts agreed that proactive approach is needed compared to the current reactive way of problem solving after the drought event occurred. Another important conclusion made by the stakeholders was that communication with general public on effective use of water is crucial in drought management.
DriDanube goals and activities were introduced, as well as the project’s strategy to involve stakeholders throughout the lifetime of the project and after its closure. An important part of the project implementation will be the regional and national trainings for end-users on developed monitoring tool – Drought User Service, planned for the second half of 2018.