The Institute for Environmental Policy participated in the launching of HERMES project in Varna, Bulgaria, 31.08-01.09.2017

International workshop – discussion on shoreline and prevention of the coastal erosion of the Adriatic, Aegean, Mediterranean and Black Sea was held in the Varna Governors office on 31st of August, 2017. The international meeting was organized within the framework of the newly-launched project “HERMES – A HarmonizEd fRamework to Mitigate coastal EroSion promoting ICZM protocol implementation”, co-funded by the Balkan-Mediterranean Program. The aim of the workshop was to introduce HERMES project to local stakeholders, to increase knowledge about coastal erosion mitigation and to initiate networking.
The workshop was officially opened by the Regional Governor of Varna – Mr. Stoyan Pasev and the Chairman of the Board of the Union of Bulgarian Black Sea Local Authorities (UBBSLA) – Mr. Atanas Stoilov.
Project’s partnership is composed of Municipality of Paggaio (GR), which is the leading organization of the project, Democritus University of Thrace (GR), Union of Bulgarian Black Sea Local Authorities -UBBSLA (BG), ORION Joint Research Center (CY), TEULEDA, Local Development Agency (AL) and the Institute for Environmental Policy (AL). Its expected duration is 24 months (August 2017-August 2019) and the total budget exceeds 1,000,000 euros.
HERMES workshop on coastal erosion in Varna was attended by more than 40 representatives of the member municipalities of UBBSLA, project partners from Greece, Cyprus and Albania, representatives of the Institute of Oceanology, Regional Inspectorate of Environment and Waters – Varna and other experts in the area of shore and erosion control. Within the framework of the open workshop, an authoritative review of ICZM legislative framework in Bulgaria and the implemented project on the Bulgarian Black Sea coast were presented, as well the technical solutions developed in the framework of projects for prevention of coastal erosion.
Representatives of the project’s partners introduced their institutions/organizations, the state of the coasts in the respective pilot areas covered by the project, and the action plan for the next 6 months.
HERMES is a common initiative of six entities, supported by the European Union through the Balkan Med Program, covering over 280km of coastline in the Adriatic, the Aegean, the Levantine and the Black Sea designed to help local communities come up with concrete and viable solutions. It aims to develop a unified and harmonized framework for coastal erosion mitigation and beach restoration through the implementation of a coherent ensemble of studies, the sharing of already developed technical tools and the design of joint policy instruments.

Under the project, special stations for monitoring wind and current waves will be purchased and installed in each partner’s country and various mitigation measures to reduce erosion will be tested, focusing on “soft” engineering techniques (dune stabilization, nourishment, geosystems, etc.).
The pilot area for Albania extends from Buna River delta to Mat River Delta.
The coordinates for the pilot sites in Albania are:
Buna: ~3km: 41°50’52.2″N 19°22’40.6″E – 41°51’41.0″N 19°24’54.9″E
Shëngjin ~ 6.5 km :41°48’20.5″N 19°35’55.3″E – 41°45’07.8″N 19°34’28.1″E
Kune-Mat ~ 10 km : 41°44’55.2″N 19°34’19.4″E – 41°38’29.8″N 19°34’17.4″E