Invasive Alien Species Observatory and Network Development for the Assessment of Climate Change Impacts in Black Sea Deltaic  Protected Areas


The Program

Program Name:  Join Operational Programme Black Sea Basin 2014 – 2020

Priority Axis: 2. Promote coordination of environmental protection and joint reduction of marine litter in the Black Sea Basin

Specific Objective:  2.1 Improve joint environmental monitoring

The Project

Project Acronym: IASON

Project Title:  Invasive Alien Species Observatory and Network Development for the Assessment of Climate Change Impacts in Black Sea Deltaic  Protected Areas

Total contract value: 987 700 Euro

Duration of the contract:  01.07.2020 – 31.12.2022

The Team

Project Leader: Gabriel LUPU, PhD, Danube Delta National Institute for Research and Development.

Project Coordinator: Gabriel LUPU, PhD

Senior Researcher: Silviu COVALIOV

Junior Researcher: Matei SIMIONOV

Financial Manager: Raluca CĂLIN


Under a global changing environment, the Black Sea is found in between the European and Asian crossroad and in the transition between the Mediterranean and North. A great number of stakeholders have developed economic activities around the Black Sea coastline, especially at the deltas, which are known for their density in population and growth potential (such as fishing, fisheries and aquacultures, tourism and recreation, farming etc). Historically, the Black Sea is under the invasion of alien species from the Indian Ocean and Mediterranean Sea due to various reasons such as shipping and global warming and at present, mediterraneanisation of the Black Sea is being discussed widely in the scientific community due to climate change. Invasive Alien Species (IAS) is the central point on which this proposal makes focus, because if not sufficiently monitored and assessed they may alter dramatically not only the ecosystem balance but also a range of already well established socio-economic activities. The overall objective of the project is to establish and perform joint monitoring actions on IAS in Black Sea deltaic ecosystems of five countries (Georgia, Greece, Ukraine, Romania and Turkey) and assess their response under current and predicted climatic conditions.

The Objectives and Results

The specific objectives of the project are to:

– Develop and implement joint monitoring and risk assessment procedures on IAS in the project’s protected areas and motivate and assist countries in creating their IAS inventories

– Improve long-term cross-border collaboration, information and research capacity through the access and use of innovative technologies on IAS monitoring

– Improve cooperation on IAS monitoring through the involvement of the public at various levels of the project

 Main results of the project will be to:

-gain baseline data on IAS in the project delta areas, under current and predicted climatic conditions, through the implementation of joint cross-border monitoring and evaluation

-the establishment of an organizational structure (Observatory) through which ICT services will be provided not only on IAS monitoring and assessments (information & research capacity) but also on networking with/and engaging citizens towards improving and using updated results of the project (institutional capacity)

-cross-border collaboration and exchange of information from developing and implementing information and communication activities, at all levels of society (education, managers, policy makers, local community)

The change that the project will bring relates with the improved access and use of data, uniform assessment, information and communication procedures on IAS threats. This improved new reality will create the background for better responses of delta ecosystems of different biogeographical zones, different protection status & management across the project area cross-border countries sharing the same challenges.