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Aqua-puncture for the critical watersheds in Bulgaria

Apr. 02, 2024
Description: Water shortages and droughts are growing challenges that are already being felt in remote parts of Varna and Sofia regions. Climate change projections by 2050 predict a further decline in average annual precipitation (by 7.5% for the Black Sea basin and 4.5% for the Danube basin), which is expected to have a negative impact on water resources.
In the Varna region, the lack of drinking water is already becoming unbearable - there are many villages that are on water regime 6-8 months a year.
Both areas are characterized by karst landscapes. This is an additional prerequisite for lower surface water levels due to the natural presence of sinkholes, but also gives richness to water sources.

In Bulgaria, there is a centuries-old tradition of building cheshma for public use by capturing drinking water in fountains.
Such places support access to drinking water for people, livestock and wildlife. Usually, the water that flows out of the tap forms a small stream, a temporary or permanent pond. These micro-wetlands contribute to the distribution and migration of protected species.
Nowadays, due to socio-economic development, many fountains are abandoned without maintenance or completely destroyed.
The revitalization of these key landscape features will contribute to climate change adaptation in response to water scarcity and biodiversity conservation in the target areas.

Funding: The project is implemented with the financial assistance of Cargill and Global Water Challenge
Duration: April 2024 - April 2025
BBF project team: Yordanka Slavova, Martina Koleva, land. arch. Gloria Marinova, Iva Georgieva, Vencislav Vassilev
Project objective: To draw public attention to water as a valuable resource under threat; to highlight the importance of public fountains and adjacent micro-wetlands to biodiversity, people and the climate; to strengthen local capacity to maintain fountains and micro-wetlands
Project activities: The project will survey public water fountains in selected regions and restore six damaged/destroyed water fountains as well as two micro-wetlands (one per region). To ensure their sustainable management, local communities will be involved in the individual phases of project actions, from exploration to restoration.