Updating the Geo-information system for water management and reporting

Project facts

Project promoter:
Executive Environment Agency
Project Number:
Target groups
Civil servants/Public administration staff,
Researchers or scientists
Initial project cost:
Final project cost:
From EEA Grants:
€ 725,080
The project is carried out in:


In 2012 the МoEW entered into a partnership with the Norwegian Water Resources and Energy Directorate on building the basic structure of an integrated information system for water management in Bulgaria. During implementation the need for new modules for integrated management and reporting in order to manage more efficiently the volume and complexity of growing data and obligations according requirements of EU and national water legislation was identified. This project aims to achieve a fully operational framework in the field of water management resources. a. Detailed analysis; b. Adaptation of existing functionality; c. Development of new modules identified as a result of a): • Marine water module; • Water management module for Water Management Plans and the Programs of measures; d. Wastewater module for reporting under the Urban waste water treatment directive. e. Nitrate module for the needs of the Nitrates Directive reporting; f. Integration and interface with water related information systems: - Interfaces for Underground waters module and surface waters module; - Integration of database for hydrologic drillings; - Interface with flood risk system under project No DIR-51211229-1-171 „Development of action plans for flood risk management”; - Interface for data visualization with systems at other administration that contain relevant data g. Analysis of the available spatial data for providing of the network services required by INSPIRE. h. Supply of equipment and software. i. Migration of existing and addition of missing data for all components. j. Implementation of the new functionalities. k. Delivering full scheme of database. ExEA is responsible for the overall coordination, management and implementation of the project. NVE will assist in the data modelling for system specification, technical support in developing the product. In addition, support in ensuring fulfillments to the Water Framework Directive.

Summary of project results

The Integrated management of water resources is essential for achieving economic and social welfare without influencing the sustainability of ecosystems. It is the main goal of modern society and in particular the Water Framework Directive 2000/60/EC. Integrated management is impossible without an information system incorporating and analyzing data from a variety of sources, providing a powerful device for decision making. The project implements the National Strategy for water sector development in Bulgaria trough the development a modular geographic information system with a service-oriented architecture which to serve all institutions responsible for water management. The developed system maintain information on all surface, groundwater, coastal and transitional water bodies, driving forces that have pressure on them and data on chemical, environmental and quantitative status, objectives and indicators, monitoring programs. The advanced information system facilitates exchange of data between national institutions relevant to water management. The system allow automatic reporting under Directive 2000/60/EU establishing a framework for Community action in the field of water policy, Directive 2008/56/EU establishing a framework for Community action in the field of water policy for the marine environment, Directive 91/271/EEC on urban waste water treatment plants and Directive 91/676/EEC on the protection of waters from pollution by nitrates from agricultural sources. It supports the establishment of programs of measures to improve the condition of water bodies and monitors their implementation. National monitoring programs and monitoring programs for basin management areas are supported.Further the GIS system maintains, visualize and analyze the spatial data for reporting to the EC. A system is accessible to the general public through the public GIS part Sustainability of the system was insured by delivered a hardware and technical equipment. The partner Norwegian water resources and energy directorate was great benefit for the implementation. Bulgarian experts were able to gain knowledge for operation of such a system in Norway The system is administered by the Executive Environment Agency but is used by Regional Inspectorates of Environment and Water, Basin Directorates, local, regional and national institutions and authorities related to water management sector. Other target groups are the non-governmental organization, researchers, students, business More than 75 experts from all stakeholders were trained in working and maintaining the GIS

Summary of bilateral results

During the implementation of the project the Executive Environment Agency was in permanent contact with the Norwegian partner – the Norwegian Water Resources and Energy Directorate (NVE). Each problem or issue was discussed, regular correspondence by e-mails, telephones and letters. There were organized several meetings in Sofia to influence the development of the GIS system. The whole process was also facilitated by the participation of an expert from the Norwegian partner in several meetings from the development of the project stages. In this way, the Bulgarian experts were able to gain knowledge by the expert who has developed and operates such a system in Norway. Of particular importance was the participation of the expert in all the project information meetings, the active participation in the discussions and his desire to cooperate with all experts and guests. In this way was built a mutual trust between the two institutions, which would be a prerequisite for future partnerships.The project gives valuable experience and contacts between the partners organizations. This will be useful since Bulgaria and Norway have to solve the same challenges given by EU regulations. The project partnership added value consists at: - Learning about the organizational and technical solutions in both partner practices and policies; - Improved work methodology by using a different approaches used in Norway and Bulgaria; - Gaining a new perspective on problems, solutions and methods lead by both partners experiences in the area; - Opportunity to develop a truly European mode of thinking by using different experts views on the same topic; - Inclusion of professional staff and in international exchanges of knowledge and know-how; - Transfer of good practices between partners; - Growing awareness and knowledge of project results and topic challenges;