Mott MacDonald has been appointed by the Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Development and Water Administration in Albania to provide technical advisory services for the preparation of River Basin Management Plans for the Drini-Buna and Seman rivers. The World Bank-funded project will identify a set of cost-effective priority measures to improve the efficiency of water resources management and use in the basins, with an emphasis on service delivery.
An assessment of the water resources in the two basins will be undertaken, covering availability and demand, the quality of surface water and groundwater, the status of existing infrastructure and identification of the main challenges for sustainable and efficient utilisation of the basins’ water resources. This information will then be used to draft the management plans and will focus on identifying the main constraints related to water in the economic development of the region and the country. This will involve defining basin development scenarios and identifying priority water resources management and development interventions. The plans will also include a preliminary programme of measures in accordance with the EU Water Framework Directive.
Mott MacDonald will organise training activities to strengthen the capacity of the Directorate of Water Resources Policies and the River Basin Authority (RBAs) staff in river basin management. This will focus on the latest concepts, best practice in Integrated River Basin management, operational management and the role of RBAs as service providers to the basin water users.
The project also includes stakeholder-based consultations to raise awareness of water resource issues and discuss proposed measures, including their costs and benefits. Water resources authorities, water users, land and natural resources management agencies, local governments and economic development ministries will all be engaged in the drafting process in order to establish the priority needs of the basin management and feasible options to address them.
Wim Verheugt, Mott MacDonald’s project director, said: “The Drini-Buna and Seman water resources are national assets of key importance to the agriculture and power sectors. These basins are increasingly vulnerable to climate change and prone to floods and droughts.”
“We are pleased to work with the Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Development and Water Administration on drawing up plans for efficient and sustainable water resources management. Our team will work alongside our other experts currently working with the same client on the preparation and implementation of an Integrated Water Resources Management Strategy for Albania,” Wim added.