The National Dialogue on Drought was attended by 50 participants: representatives of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Food, Ministry of the Environment, Directorate for Water, Biotechnical Faculty and other institutions. This consultation is a continuation of the first two, which were organized in 2014 and the conclusions from which were considered in the preparation of Guidelines on Drought Management.
The brochure Drought and Water Framework Directive, which is a Slovenian version of the Drought Management Guidelines, featuring the characteristics of the drought management in Slovenia, served as a basis for discussions. Jointly prepared by GWP Slovenia and ARSO, the publication was presented by Sabina Bokal, IDMP CEE project manager. The purpose of the document is also to stimulate the development and preparation of drought management policies in the context of the Water Framework Directive. The document proposed seven steps as a basis for drought policy in Slovenia with additional examples.
Drought management in Slovenia
Experts from the Slovenian Environment Agency Andreja Sušnik, Gregor Gregorič and Mojca Dolinar explained the current state of drought monitoring system in Slovenia, provided detailed information on how drought is implemented in the legislative, and presented climate change scenarios and hydrological extremes in Slovenia.
Part of the event was a panel discussion with representatives of the Slovenian Chamber of Agriculture and Forestry, Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Food, Directorate for Water, Slovenian Environment Agency, Biotechnical Faculty. They presented their views on a proposal for drought management in Slovenia and put forward suggestions for improving governance in order to make the procedures during the occurrence of drought more predictable and readiness of the Slovenian society to drought more efficient.
Drought and legislation in Slovenia
The presentations and discussion clearly highlighted the fact, that drought is becoming a bigger problem every year, but funds for drought relief are progressively decreasing. In Slovenia drought has been already recognized as a national risk, on expert level. We can only hope that this will be confirmed by the Slovenian government and according to article 13 of WFD, Slovenia would prepare a drought management plan, and include it into the River Basin Management Plans 2021.
Drought monitoring in Slovenian Environment Agency, which includes measuring state of meteorological and hydrological variables (precipitation, evaporation, water flow, level of ground water, etc.) and forecasting (hydrology, meteorology), was gradually developed in the past years.
It is crucial to focus on building awareness for all users – experts, as well as the broad public, to consider also their opinion and strengthen the communication channels (websites, mobile applications, education, etc.). This will ultimately lead to better knowledge and usage of Slovenian Environment Agency’s information on drought issues. So far the drought management has been linked mainly to the farming sector, whereas other users of water resources (hydro power plants, tourism, water supply, traffic, fishery etc.) haven’t been considered enough.
The legal basis for drought is scattered: an integrated approach for water management is needed (for droughts and floods) and all sectors need to be included.
Download the Drought and Water Framework Directive.
For more information, please contact Sabina Bokal, Programme Manager at sabina.bokal[at]gwpcee.org.
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