MONITOX International Symposium “Deltas and Wetlands” was organized in the period 15th-17th September 2019 by Danube Delta National Institute for Research and Development, Tulcea, and Dunarea de Jos University of Galati, Romania (Leader Beneficiary), in the frame of the project, “Black Sea Basin interdisciplinary cooperation network for sustainable joint monitoring of environmental toxicants migration, improved evaluation of ecological state and human health impact of harmful substances, and public exposure prevention” (acronym “MONITOX”), code BSB27 in cooperation with the partner institutions: Institute of Zoology, Republic of Moldova; Eastern Macedonia and Thrace Institute of Technology, Kavala, Greece; and Institute of Geology and Seismology, Republic of Moldova.
The Symposium was focused on the current developments on environmental monitoring and management of deltaic and wetland areas with an emphasis on the results obtained so far in the frame of the BSB27 project activities. It provided an opportunity for members of the target groups, scientists, decision-makers and stakeholders to meet each other and to establish new relations and partnerships. This fact will promote the cooperation in environmental research and management among countries from the connected regions – Black Sea Basin and the Mediterranean Basin.
Participation was very encouraging, from researchers and specialists members of the BSB27 project teams, to scientists and young researchers representing other institutions from Romania, Republic of Moldova, Greece, Ukraine, Norway and Russian Federation, as well as volunteers – undergraduate students, magisters, doctoral students, alumni. 54 abstracts were selected for plenary and poster presentations, covering a wide range of topics grouped in three interrelated sections:
The contributions main subjects were: the investigation of toxic and carcinogenic compounds (heavy metals, pesticides, polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons, nutrients, endocrine disruptors, radioactive isotopes) and their migration in different environmental compartments and risk to human health, studies on the influence of human activities on the state of ecosystems, the use of environmental biomonitoring techniques, optimization of high sensitivity and precision analytical techniques used to detect substances with negative impact on population health and ecological status, as well as and the presence of emerging pollutants, such as pharmaceuticals (antibiotics, analgesics, contraceptives) in surface water and microplastics in environmental samples, cosmetics. There were presented: a new ecotoxicological system for regional environmental monitoring and preliminary results obtained from joint, interdisciplinary research within the MONITOX project in the target ecosystems of the Danube region and the Prut, Dniester and Nestos rivers, the Black Sea and Aegean Sea coast, Danube Delta and Nestos Delta, regarding the concentration of toxic and carcinogenic pollutants.
The organizers and project coordinators hope that the International Symposium of MONITOX network was an important scientific event for the development of modern approaches for the environmental quality monitoring and regional cooperation, providing a suitable background for the exchange of information and ideas in virtually all areas of environmental research specific to deltas and wetlands ecosystems, leading towards a better scientific and academic interdisciplinary networking in the Black Sea Basin.
The program and volume of abstracts could be found accessing the link: https://www.monitox.ugal.ro/images/events/abstract_book_symposium.pdf.
The first meeting of the Joint Programming Committee – body responsible for the preparation of the Interreg NEXT (Neighbourhood External) Black Sea Basin Programme 2021-2027 – was held on the 29th of January 2020 in Brussels, Belgium. The eligible participating countries of the new Programme involves ten states from the Black Sea Basin: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Georgia, Greece, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russian Federation, Turkey and Ukraine.