South-Western Slovakia case study

Introduction

Increasing water retention capacity, improving irrigation systems and enhancing the landscape structure have a direct impact on reducing the risks of floods and droughts in the south-west part of Slovakia, ensuring water security, eliminating desertification and reducing the loss of biodiversity on a synergic basis.

Specifically, these problems are the major issues in Slovakia according to governmental as well as scientific documents.

A specific problem in Slovakia is the fragmentation of land, which is hampering efforts to build water retention infrastructure. Without land consolidation, which is already included in official policies, the implementation of any water retention facilities is very costly.

Context

Extreme weather: droughts causing significant precipitation unevenness, resulting in an increase in potential evapotranspiration occurrence of extreme daily precipitation totals resulting in more often local floods.

Consequences: extreme excess of precipitation and subsequent floods damage cultivated agricultural land continuous drainage lakes formed in the fields, rising groundwater levels compaction of agricultural land, soil contamination loss of organic matter, erosion and landslides

Needs: to increase the care of systems enabling
rainwaterretention or a safe drainage of surface areas
through drainage elements or infiltration devices

Contribution
Economy:

  • water security for sustainable agriculture and living integrated
  • water and soil management plans Ecosystems

Ecosystems:

  • protection of bio and landscape diversity

METHODOLOGY & EXPECTED RESULTS

  • monitoring and balancing water retention capacity in the cadastres of municipalities
  • cost benefits of land consolidation measures
  • proposal of measures to improve water retention capacity and to increase the carbon content in soil (to improve erosion protection)
  • preparation of integrated rainwater and soil fund management plans (as part of local water and soil planning

LOCAL WATER GOVERNANCE SYSTEMS ANALYSIS

Legislative framework:

  • Water Act (2004), Package of hydro melioration measures for adaptation to climate change and renewal of irrigation infrastructure, Strategy for adaptation of the SR to climate change, Action plan for solving the effects of droughts and water shortage , Integrated national energy and climate plan for 2021 2030, Strategic Plan of the Common Agricultural Policy, Strategy for protection of nature and countryside till 2030, Land Consolidation Act (1991), Slovak Rural Development Programme , national and local urban planning policies

Policy and management measures in place:

  • financial support and investment grants for water retention measures and irrigation infrastructure, permits and fees for groundwater usage, surface water usage and wastewater discharge, approvals in case of urban planning (buildings), pricing schemes and insurance policies

LOCAL INDICATORS USED FOR MONITORING WATER GOVERNANCE

By improving soil management, water retention capacity of soils and landscape structure, we can effectively moderate and address three main indicators of climate change

  • average global, regional, local temperatures
  • water levels land drying and groundwater levels
  • carbon sequestration in soils and soil protection

STAKEHOLDER ENGAGEMENT & PUBLIC PARTICIPATION ANALYSIS

Stakeholders with competing interests
national and local governments

  • farmers
  • private sector (industrial use of water)
  • civil society, consumers citizens
  • NGOs