Friday, 21 December 2007

About 2008 ...

2008: European Year of Intercultural Dialogue

On December 4th, the European Commission launched the media campaign for the «European Year of Intercultural Dialogue» and its motto « Together for the Diversity ». The European Year of Intercultural Dialogue throughout 2008 will help raise the awareness of all those living in the European Union, especially young people, of the importance of engaging in intercultural dialogue in their daily lives and of becoming active European citizens. European Year of Intercultural Dialogue will aid this process of communication between cultures and subcultures. It will foster dialogue in education, training, and in the workplace but also in leisure, cultural, sports centres and civil society organisations.


more info: http:// &

Council of Europe’s website dedicated to the project «Intercultural Dialogue and Conflicts prevention»

Monday, 12 November 2007

from Monday, 5 November 2007 / Thessaloniki - Hellas

I am living and working in Thessaloniki....
at the Protection of Natural Environment Department - Prefecture of Thessaloniki.

Tuesday, 30 October 2007

Friday, 25 October to Saturday 27 October 2007 / Budapest - Hungary

Euro-Med seminar «The role of youth participation and civil society in youth policy and youth work development in the broader Euro-Med Context» organised in the framework of the Partnership on Youth between the Council of Europe and the European Commission and in co-operation with the League of Arab States between the 24-27 October 2007 at the European Youth Center Budapest of Council of Europe (
Nawaf AlMaskati / Bahrain - Bahrain Child Centre & Bahrain Youth Parliament
Abdullah Abdulsalam Al-Thawr / Yemen – Democracy School
Maya Georges Boutros / Lebanon - Arab Thought Foundation
Rasha Fityan / Palestine - Ta'awon, Conflict Resolution Institute &
Roa'a Khudairi / Jordan - Save the Children
Mohamed Yassein Hussein / Egypt - Youth-led group 3rd Eye initiative
Sarah Zaami / Morocco - Soliya
Amin Zayani / Tunisia (Egypt) – Blogger
Foued El Ouni / Tunisia - Observatoire National de la jeunesse
Khalil Raihani / France (& Morocco) - Association Migration Solidarité et Échanges pour le Développement (AMSED)
Natalia Sacristian Romero / Spain - Asociacion para la Integracion Progreso de las Culturas (AIPC) – PANDORA
Cilly Kurkhaus / Germany - Youth office of the city of Leipzig
Esther Gelabert / France (& Spain) - Institut National de la Jeunesse et de l’ Education Populaire (INJEP)
Gisele Kirby / UK - SALTO Euro-Med
Simona Rossi / Italy - MSOI Movement for the International Student Organization
Emmy Bornemark / Sweden – Ungdomsstyrelsen – The Swedish National Board for Youth Affairs
Fredrik Engstrom / Sweden - Landsrådet för Sveriges Ungdomsorganisationer (LSU)
Simon Klein / Sweden - Umea Central Youth Council, Umea Municipality
Johan Lindgren / Sweden - Youth Ombudsman, Umea Municipality
Tiberiu Iacomi / Romania - Save the children
Borislava Daskalova / Bulgaria - Euro-Mediterranean Network for Youth Trafficking Prevention (EMNYTP)
Zoran Ilieski / FYROM - Coalition of Youth Organizations SEGA
Ali-Oktay KOC / Turkey - At European Youth Centre Budapest
Christina Kontaxi / Greece - Mediterranean SOS Network

Speakers & Guests
Dr Atef Odaybat / Secretary General of the Supreme Youth Council in Jordan
Dr Iman El Kafas / Board Member of National Youth Council of Egypt
H.E. Nancy Bakir / Under Secretary General of the League of Arab States
Antje Rothemund / Executive Director of the European Youth Centre Budapest
Giuseppe Porcaro / European Youth Forum
Dr Abdel Baset Abdel Muty / Egypt
Dr Helmut Willems / Luxemburg University
Rui Gomes / Head of Unit Education and Training, Directorate of Youth and Sport, Council of Europe
Yara Shahin / Egypt

Preparatory Group
Khaled Louhini, Ghada El Shazly, Haythem Kamel / League of Arab States
Marta Medlinska, Philipp Boetzelen, Viktoria Karpatska, Hans-Joachim Schild / Partnership on Youth between the Council of Europe & the European Commission &
Iris Bawidamann / Council of Europe - European Youth Centre Strasbourg

Thursday, 24 October 2007 / Budapest – Hungary

It was about 6 o’clock in the afternoon, opposite the Synagogue in Budapest city centre (Pest), when the traffic lights became red and these two girls stood in front of the cars. Use public transportation instead using your car, an advertisement of the public transportation company.

Wednesday, 10 October 2007 / Bucharest - Romania

Campaign in Romania “Don’t cut the trees as (if you were all alone, a savage) in the forest” in order to raise awareness on the massive cutting of trees in Romania. As part of the project “Trees are also crying” banners are put on the trees in Bucharest city centre. The banners are clothes put around the trees (black as for a funeral) as if the trees are mourning for their relatives from different parts of Romania which are no longer alive because there are cut down!

Picture on the left: We are complaining about the extinct of our relatives from Harghita.
Picture on the right: Mourn for the disappearing of our friends from Carpati Mountains.

Find out more in the campaign’s blog (in Romanian) at This article would never be posted without the help of my Romanian friend Ana-Maria Saracu, who translated the messages on the trees from Romanian to English and provided me with the story of the campaign and the blog of it. Thank you very much Ana – Maria!

Saturday, 13 October 2007

Thursday, 4 October to Tuesday, 9 October 2007 / Brasov - Romania

International training “All different – But together” supporting networking and co-operation between youth organizations and individuals, from South – Eastern Europe (Council of Europe – European Youth Foundation). Organized by Initiative Group Alpbach Brasov (info: Initiative Group Alpbach Brasov - and Roxana Andrei, Alexandru Ailiesiei, Ana-Maria Saracu, Laura Coste, Nikos Gkiatas, Andrei Trofin, Mirce, Aida

An international training about networking and co-operation in a fragile region of the world! First time with people from all over the Balkans, first opportunity to co-operate and support future actions with my neighbors, for me was an experience. A lot of future projects were discussed one of those being: LET’S BALKANIZE! Why using the word balkanize to describe division and not unity as it was originally used? If you are interested join us:

Bosnia-Herzegovina: Jasmina Colic (Peace builders) & Jelena Mocevic
Bulgaria: Peruz Egikyan, Sevdana Docheva & Mariya Peeva
Croatia: Marina Kolar (info: Udruga Zora -, Vedrana Klaric & Marina Zadro (Udruga Mozaik)
Cyprus: Hakan Karahasan (info: POST Research Institute -
FYROM: Ognen Janeski
Greece: Christina Kontaxi
Kosovo: Agron Parduzi & Artan Visoka (info: Kosova Servas)
Catalin Mihailescu (info: Youth of the 21 century -
Serbia: Marko Ivanovic, Nikola Koruga & Nevena Gojkovic
Turkey: Bilge Filiz

The photo is a courtesy of Initiative Group Alpbach Brasov

Sunday, 16 September 2007

16 September 2007: International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer

in order to protect the ozone layer by controlling emissions of substances that deplete it. Proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly on 19 December 1994, since in 16 September 1987 the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer was signed). Thus, in this year’s celebration of International Ozone Day, the Montreal Protocol will celebrate its 20th Anniversary. Moreover, 2007 is also the International Year of the Ozone Layer.

20th Montreal Protocol (by: Environment Canada /

The Montreal Protocol supplements the Vienna Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer (Vienna 22/03/1985) and was signed by 29 countries in Montreal on 16/9/1987. The Protocol is designed to regulate the production and consumption of ozone-depleting substances (ODS). Controlled substances are listed in four annexes, and their respective phase-out schedules are designed to allow for progressive tightening over time as scientific evidence for ozone depletion trend is strengthened and as substitutes for the ODS in question are developed. The parties committed to reduce production and consumption of CFCs by half by 1998 and to freeze production and consumption of halons by 1992. Developing countries were granted a 10-year grace period to meet both obligations. The Montreal Protocol was amended in London on 29/06/1990, Copenhagen on 25/11/1992, Montreal on 17/09/1997 and Beijing in December 1999. The Protocol and its 4 amendments have all been concluded by the European Community, respectively on: 16/12/1988 (Council Decision 88/540/EEC, OJ L 297 of 31/10/1988); 20/12/1991 (Decision 91/690/EEC, OJ L 377 of 31/12/1991); 2/12/1993 (Council Decision 94/68/EC, OJ L 33 of 07/02/1994); 17/10/2000 (Council Decision 2000/646/EC, OJ L 272 of 25/10/2000) and on 04/03/2002 (Council Decision 2002/215/EC, OJ L 72 of 14/03/2002). The Vienna Convention together with the Montreal Protocol makes up the “Ozone Treaties”. Participation in the Protocol implies participation in the Convention.

WHAT YOU CAN DO? Always buy food, cosmetics, medicine, devices (air-conditions, refrigerators) etc that is clearly stated that: CONTAINS NO CFCS OR OTHER OZONE DEPLETING SUBSTANCES.
More info:
20th Anniversary of the Montreal Protocol /
United Nations Environmental Programme-Ozone Secretariat /
European Commission, Treaties Office Database /
C. Zerefos /

Sunday, 12 August 2007

Friday, 20 July to Wednesday, 7 August 2007 / Olympos Karpathou / Greece

Summer volunteer work program in Northern Karpathos Island (… or being more precise in Olympos of Karpathos Island & Saria Island!)

Organized by the MEDITERRANEAN SOS Network (info: accepting the invitation of the Management Agency of Karpathos & Saria*
19 days on the northern most part of Karpathos Island & not to forget on Saria Island! A lot of pathways, a lot of beach cleaning & a little bit of help on the Management Agency Office! I must thank both groups of volunteers: A΄ group (24/7/07 - 31/7/07): Anna, Eleni, Maria, Nikos & Theofilos / B΄ group (31/7/07 - 7/8/07): Laura, Poppy & Stamatis … and of course many many thanks to Despina - Eleni - Foula - George - Manolis - Ntinos the human chain responsible for the protection of the area. Lots of thanks to people in Diafani. Some ideas, projects etc were left aside, maybe because I always need a reason to go back…

* (Management Agency of the Northern Karpathos, Saria and the surrounding marine area / NATURA 2000 Network – code GR4210003)

photos are courtesy of Laura Tapini & Christina Kontaxi

Monday, 16 July 2007

Saturday, 7 July to Saturday, 14 July 2007 / Estonia

Training Course 'Young & active citizenship' (EC Youth Programme, Action 4),

A training where we shared knowledge and were trained as youth workers and/or leaders in youth organizations. We shared our experiences and gained knowledge about youth project management. New contacts were also established. Moreover we developed common project ideas in the field of the new program Youth in Action. Through workshops, debates, discussion and study visit we established an environment in which we got the opportunity to develop ourselves as individuals and as a group. Thanks a lot!

Aki Nummelin, Finland -
Anna Ageberg, Sweden - &
Karol Rudny & Tomasz Starzyk, Poland -
Izabela Szmit, Poland -
Adrian Rodriguez & Sonia Iglesias, Spain – celtas terrae
Milos Christian Gabriel, Rumenia - &
Eugenia Barbu & Andreea Ionescu, Rumenia -
Gianandrea Salvestrin, Italy - &
Riina Aljas, Estonia – MTÜ Kavandi Kandi Selts
Lilian Väster, Estonia – & Leisi VARKS
Christina Kontaxi, Greece -

Peter Keijzer, the Netherlands -
Ingrid Põldemaa & Ene Põldemaa, Estonia - MTÜ Islander

Thursday, 28 June 2007

Discussing with my neighbours...(*)

Buffalos Bubalus bubalis [family of Bovidae]

Water buffalos, buffalo-cows (Ali & Fahmy, 2007), Mediterranean Italian buffaloes (Presicce et. al., 2005) all Bubalus bubalis !

Buffalo plays a very important role in agriculture and animal production industry in many Asian and Mediterranean countries. Two main types of domestic buffalo are the river buffalo and the swamp buffalo. River buffalo live in a geographical belt from India in the east to Italy in the west, passing through Pakistan, Iran, Turkmenistan, Iraq, Syria, Egypt, Azerbaijan, Turkey, Greece, Bulgaria and the former Yugoslavia (Rosati & Van Vleck, 2002). The river buffalo is mainly reared for milk production. Jafarabadi and Murrah in India, Nili Ravi and Kundi in Pakistan, Beheri and Saidi in Egypt and Italian and Shumen in Europe are well known types of river buffalo (Rosati & Van Vleck, 2002 & Barros et al., 2007). According to Koonjaenak et al. (2007) river-type buffalos produce primarily milk and swamp-type buffalos produce meat.

The buffalo is the skeletal base of the Indian dairy industry as it contributes about 56.9% (50.74 million ton) of the countries and 66.2% of the world’s total buffalo milk production (FAO, 2004). According to scientific results on water buffalos, they are found in: Egypt (Ali & Fahmy, 2007 & Osman & Al-Gaabary, 2007), Italy (Tudisco et al., 2006 & Gasparrini, et. al., 2007), Thailand (Techakumphu et al., 2004 & Koonjaenak et al., 2007), China (Lu et al., 2006 & Yu et al., 2007), Japan (Hirayama et al., 2006), India (Meena & Das, 2006 & Dwivedi et al., 1997), Brazil (Gennari et al., 2005), Vietnam (Huong, 1999), Nepal (Heinen & Singh, 2001) and Philippines (Gundran & Simon, 1999). Translocated populations of buffalos (Bubalus bubalis) from Southeast Asia are found in Australia (Kanameda et al., 1999). Buffalos introduced in Australia affected a endangered rainforest palm and had a reverse effect (Liddle et al., 2006).

Buffalos are found also in Greece...

In Lake Prespa, situated between Albania, FYROM and Greece, buffalo grazing on the shores of the lake is beneficial both to man and to biodiveristy. By clearing off thick vegetation in the reed-beds, buffalos help create suitable areas for fish to spawn their eggs. This helps support high fish populations that sustain fishing activity but also for birds and animals higher up the food chain that depends on fish.
In Kerkini lake, situated in Macedonia Greece, buffalos are grazing along the plains of Strymon river. There, every summer (28/7) there is a celebration on water buffalos. In the framework of the Life – Nature Program "Conservation management of Amvrakikos Wetlands" LIFE 99 NAT/GR/006475, GR 2110001 for the protection and management of the wetlands of Ambrakikos gulf, the use of the water buffalos was suggested for the conservation of the reeds. That can be succeeded by putting the water buffalos out to grass. As the reeds of the wetlands nowadays are downgrading because of intensive agriculture, drainage, alteration of the hydrological regime, etc. However, the breeding of water buffalos can also restore a traditional cattle-farm that is abandoned the last decades. In the Amvrakikos wetland, in an area of 50 sq km (position: Parasta – village: Strogyli – Municipality: Amvrakikos) water buffalos are introduced for scientific reasons in order for scientists to conclude on the use of them for the management of reeds.

Buffalos in the Strymon river plains. A bike excursion along the river was organized by Ioannis Reklos ( during EC Youth Programme, Action 1 - Youth Exchange ‘Culture & Biodiversity: paths without frontiers’, Prefectures of Kilkis & Serres, Greece (2-10 September 2006). Photo is a courtesy of MIO-ECSDE (Mediterranean Information Office for Environment, Culture and Sustainable Development -

(*) Biosfera Bitola (

More info:
Ali & Fahmy, 2007. Theriogenology, Vol. 68, 1, 23-28 pp.
Barros et al., 2007. Veterinary Microbiology, Vol. 120, 1-2, 50-62pp.
Dwivedi et al., 1997. Science of The Total Environment, Vol. 207, 2-3, 105-109pp.
Gasparrini et al., 2007. Animal Reproduction Science, Vol. 98, 3-4, 335-342pp.
Gennari et al., 2005. Veterinary Parasitology, Vol. 134, 1-2, 169-171pp.
Gundran & Simon, 1999. Preventive Veterinary Medicine, Vol. 40, 2, 87-100pp.
Heinen & Singh, 2001. Biological Conservation, Vol. 101, 3, 391-394 pp.
Hirayama et al., 2006. Theriogenology, Vol. 66, 5, 1249-1256pp.
Huong, 1999. Veterinary Parasitology, Vol. 86, 1, 33-39pp.
Kanameda et al., 1999. Preventive Veterinary Medicine, Vol. 39, 2, 129-135pp.
Koonjaenak et al., 2007. Theriogenology, Vol. 67, 9, 1424-1435 pp.
Liddle et al., 2006. Biological Conservation, Vol. 132, 3, 362-375pp.
Lu et al., 2006. Animal Reproduction Science, Vol. 95, 1-2, 158-164pp.
Meena et al., 2006. Animal Reproduction Science, Vol. 93, 3-4, 258-267pp.
Osman & Al-Gaabary, 2007. Veterinary Parasitology, Vol.146, 3-4, 337-340pp.
Presicce et al., 2005. Theriogenology, Vol. 63, 5, 1430-1439pp.
Rosati & Van Vleck, 2002. Livestock Production Science, Vol. 74, 2, 185-190pp.
Techakumphu et al., 2004. Theriogenology, Vol. 61, 9, 1705-1711pp.
Tudisco et al., 2006. Livestock Science, Vol. 105, 1-3, 12-18pp.
Yu et al., 2007. Veterinary Parasitology, Vol. 143, 1, 79-85pp.
About Greece:
ETANAM – Development Agency of Amvrakikos North Hpirus
MedWet - The Mediterranean Initiative of the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands
Rodia Wetlands Center

Thursday, 14 June 2007

Wednesday, 13 June 2007 Athens Concert Hall / Greece

AL GORE, former United States Vice President, gave a lecture on the major ecological issue of the climate crisis. The event was organised by Megaron Plus in cooperation with ECOWEEK 2007 (more on

Al Gore, had renewed most of the info / photos and diagrams contained in his film with data from 2005 and 2006. What was extra pointed out?

- he made a comment: on the money being spent in the war of Iraq……on the time media devote on the problems nature is facing in comparison with Ann Nicole Smith's funeral arrangements…
- he included in his lecture 2 pictures from a Greek place: Chanioti Halkidikis, one showing the disasters on the shore because of a summer storm that created surging flood waters and the other people standing on the shore while the pine forest was burnt (August 2006).
- he ended up saying that for Greece ‘political will is a renewable resource’!

Al Gore's oscar winning documentary film "An Inconvenient Truth" on

Sunday, 27 May 2007

Wednesday, 16 May to Saturday, 26 May 2007 Centro di Educazione Ambientale "Serra Guarneri" / Sicily

Youth Exchange: “Connections” (EC Youth Programme, Action 1 - Youth for Europe),

Host group:
Italy: Centro Studi ed Iniziative Europeo (info:

Sending groups:
Bulgaria: Opportunity and Protection Association
Estonia: Generating ideas
Greece: Mediterranean SOS Network (info:
Portugal: Blá, Blá, Blá – Teatro Jovem de Campo Maior (info:
Spain: INTRAS (info:
Turkey: Kasif Youth and Sport Club Association (info:
United Kingdom: Council of Ethnic Minority Voluntary Sector Organisations (info:

Tronesty (Truth & Honesty!)

Thematic Areas covered:
Community Building - Prejudices - Interpersonal Skills - Conflict Resolution - European Citizenship & Network Activity

Visits to the host country:

Centro di Educazione Ambientale "Serra Guarneri"
Parco delle Madonie
Madonie GeoPark

Impressions from the programme at MedSOS site (in Greek):

Monday, 21 May 2007 Centro di Educazione Ambientale "Serra Guarneri" / Sicily - Empathy

During the exchange, an activity on Interpersonal Skills and Active listening was organized. In particular «Empathy» was the main topic of the activity!
Create Empathy

(Handout session - link: / Conflict Resolution Trainers Manual - 12 Skills)

Listen with your head and your heart.

Empathy is sensing another's feelings and attitudes as if we had experienced them ourselves. It is our willingness to enter another's world, and being able to communicate to that person our sensitivity to them. It is not blind sentimentality; it always retains some objectivity and distance. We do not lose our own identity, though we discover our common humanity.

Create empathy by:
• taking seriously others' needs and concerns
• valuing feelings and attitudes
• respecting others' privacy, experience and values
• listening actively
• encouraging further elaboration and clarification using open body language and a warm vocal tone
• reserving judgement and blame
• displaying interest in what others communicate
• withholding unsought advice
• supporting others' attempts to find a solution
• making affirming statements and gestures.

uncovers complex needs and concerns
encourages blossoming and growth
improves relationships
supports confidence and self-knowledge

Copyright: The conflict resolution network,

Where that word comes from???
Empathy (Em + pathy, eg: someone that is on condition of pathos [strong desire, feeling])

So, whoever is experiencing a strong condition of pathos, he is in a situation of empathy. The original meaning of the word doesn’t have a positive or negative meaning!!!
Furthermore, originally the word was used to describe a person’s condition. Later on, in the Hellenistic period the word empathy was used to describe someone that is taking part in the condition [pathos] of another person.
In Greek, nowadays the word is being used for its negative meaning. The exactly opposite meaning is used in English!!!

Do you want to know more?
Check the word in English, English – Greek & Greek – English dictionary. I did! Check this out:
~ Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary – Oxford University Press
Empathy, 1. Ability to imagine and share another person’s feelings, experience, etc: ‘There is a strange empathy between the old lady and her grandson’ 2. Ability to identify oneself mentally with eg a work of art that one is looking at, and so to understand its meaning
~ Oxford English – Greek Learner’s Dictionary D.N. Stavropoulos & A.S. Hornby – Oxford University Press
Empathy, word doesn’t exist!
~ Oxford Greek – English Learner’s Dictionary D.N. Stavropoulos – Oxford University Press
Empathy, Passion, hatred, bitterness

Friday, 4 May 2007

Saturday, 28 April to Monday, 1 May 2007 Lebanon

1st Encounter of Euro-Mediterranean Youth, Beirut – Lebanon “Conflict Prevention & Peace building”
The Encounter was organized by the Euro-Mediterranean Platform – Lebanon (info: in collaboration with Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung – Lebanon (info:

- - - Saturday, 28 April 2007

Mr. Georges Abi Saleh, Representative of Euro-Med Platform – Lebanon
Mr. Samir Farah, Representative of Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung – Lebanon
Ms. Rana Fatfat, Representative of Lebanese Minister of Youth
Ms. Irene Plank, Representative of the German Embassy – Lebanon

Keynote Presentations
Ms. Annette Lohmann, Transforming Conflicts – Building Peace. The International Work of Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung FES – Germany-Department for Development Policy
Dr. Sari Hanafi, Civil Society between Euro-Mediterranean Partnership and Neighbourhood Policies: A view from the South. American University – Lebanon

1st Workshop: The Culture of War and the Culture of Peace. Case Studies:
Transitional Justice
Ms. Marieke Wierda - International Centre for Transitional Justice
Dr. Ziad Baroud, Lawyer, Saint Joseph University – Lebanon

- - - Sunday, 29 April 2007
Open Discussion: “Responsibility to Protect”, Ms. Annette Lohman, FES – Germany – Department for Development Policy

- - - Monday, 30 April 2007
2nd Workshop: The Structural Aspect of Conflict Prevention
Mr. Fadi Abou Allam, Permanent Peace Movement – Lebanon
3rd Workshop: Interpersonal Skills for Conflict Resolution

Dr. Ossama Safa, Lebanese Centre for Policy Studies – Lebanon

47 youth from 10 Mediterranean countries and 27 organizations, NGO’s etc. participated,

1. Lebanese Association for Human Rights, Lebanon (info:
2. Lebanese Family Planning Association, Lebanon (info:
3. Lebyouth, Lebanon (info:
4. Lebanese Women Democratic Gathering, Lebanon
5. Amel Association, Lebanon (info:
6. Association de justice et misericorde, Lebanon
7. OffreJoie, Lebanon (info:
8. Civic Responsibility Association, Lebanon
9. Cultural Movement Antelias, Lebanon (info:
10. Coordination Committee for Palestinian NGOs working in Lebanon, Lebanon
11. Lebanese Committee for Environment and Development, Lebanon
12. Al-Hares Center for Studies and Media, Palestine (info:
13. International Peace and cooperation center, Palestine (info:
14. Nahdet El-Mahrousa Association, Egypt (info:
15. Egyptian Association for Community Participation Enhancement, Egypt (info: (info:
16. Groupe des jeunes chercheurs en sciences sociales et development, Maroc
17. Forum des jeunes Marocains du 3eme milloinaine, Maroc
18. National Forum for Youth and Culture, Jordan (info:
19. Jordaninan Women's Union, Jordan
20. Coupole d'une centaine d'associations et mouvements de la Société civile impliqués dans la solidarité Nord Sud en Belgique francophone (CNCD), Belgium (info:
21. Eurostep, France (info:
22. Centre Regional d'Actions Socialesinterculturelles et de Communication, France
23. Reseau euromediterreaneen universitaires, France
24. Babelmed Journalist, Italy (info:
25. Young Socialists, Germany (Young Socialists in the SPD, info:
26. Mediterranean Information Office for Environment, Culture and sustainable Development, Greece (info:

Join us on Broumana Peace:

Read also Sustainable Mediterranean - issue no 47 - 2/2007 - Quar­ter­ly newsletter produced by the Me­di­ter­ra­ne­an Infor­mation Offi­ce for the Envi­ronment, Culture and Sustai­na­ble Develop­ment, in collaboration with the Europe­an Envi­ronme­ntal Bure­au and the Arab NGO Network for Envi­ronmentand Deve­lop­ment @

Friday, 27 April 2007

Tuesday, 24 April 2007 Athens / Greece

Robert Swan lecture: «Leadership on the edge», in the framework of ECOWEEK
Explorer & Adventurer, Robert Swan, is the first person to walk to both the North and South poles.

What did Robert Swan pointed out?

- Everything concerning the environment has a negative meaning.
- Try and feed people positive news so as in order to inspire them.
- It’s never too early or too late to try and make the difference.
- Think what is possible to achieve and no what is not possible to achieve.
- Refresh / Recycle / Renew
- Last exploration: survive on earth. Possibly on 2041 no Arctic pole will exist!

The Antarctic Treaty was signed in Washington on 1 December 1959 by 12 states, and entered into force for those states on 23 June 1961. Greece as an ‘Acceding State’ joined the treaty on 8 Jan 1987, being the 34th member. On 2041 Greece and the rest 42 countries are going to decide the review of the Treaty. Antarctica is the only place in earth we all own! That is why Swan’s webpage is:

a) Parties to the Treaty now represent 70% of the world's population.
b) 70% of world’s fresh water is in Antarctica.

Let's don’t forget that 2007 is the International Polar Year & is focused on global warming and climate change.

Thursday, 26 April 2007

Sunday, 21 April 2007 Karystos / Greece

Castello Rosso (Red Castle)

Castello Rosso, the red castle, is situated in the mountain Ochi (at a height approx. 450m), overlooking the modern town of Karystos, the southernmost town of Evia island. Castello Rosso is one of the remarkable castles built in Greece at the 13th century. Some say that a fortress was built around 1030 for the first time in the place where the Castle is sited today [3].

History (mainly review of [1]):

Evia or Euboea, in the Middle Ages, was known to the Latins under the name "Ne(i)groponte". According to the Partitio terrarum imperii Romanie (treaty for the partition of the territories of the Byzantine Empire – fall of the Byzantine Empire during the 4th crusade in 1204), a part of Euboea was awarded to the Latin king of Thessalonika Boniface of Montferrat (1204-1207) who in 1205 ceded the island to three barons from Verona, Italy. The three barons were given the name triarchs (terzieri or terciers), since each one of them got one third of the island, namely one of the three baronies into which Euboea was divided. The southern section with Karystos as its capital (terzero di Caristo) was given to the baron named Ravano dalle Carceri. Towards the end of 1208, he became the lord of the entire island.

Ravano ranged himself with the Lombard lords of Thessalonika in his struggle against the Latin emperor of Constantinople (1207-1209). In March of 1209 Ravano contracted a treaty of alliance with Venice, by which he acknowledged the Venetian dominion in Euboea. On 20 May 1209, Ravano also acknowledged the dominance of the Latin emperor of Constantinople and became his liege. Ravano died in 1216 and the Venetian bailus Pietro Barbo intervened in the feud of the six relatives of Ravano, who claimed his inheritance dividing the island into six districts (sestieri). The Venetian bailus gradually became the real governor of the whole island. The following years the dependence of parts of the island came upon the prince of Achaia William II de Villehardouin (1246-1278), the Latin emperor of Constantinople and the Venetians.

The contribution of the Venetian baili to the defence of the island had been significant in periods of external enemy attacks, although Venice had not always been in the position to offer important military assistance to the triarchs. Some of the attacks were that of the prince of Achaia in 1258, the operations of the Latin knight of Karystos Licario (who fought in the service of Michael VIII Palaiologos), during which (1264-1280) he conquered Karystos with the support of the Byzantines from 1271 onwards, and the Turkish naval attacks of the 14th century. The Lombard sestieri and the Greek nobles took an oath of fidelity to the Venetian bailus, thus acknowledging Venice as the prevailing power on the island.

Towards the end of 1317 and beginning of 1318, Karystos was conquered by the Catalan Don Alfonso Fadrique, vicar-general of the duchy of Athens and illegitimate son of Frederic II, king of Sicily (1295-1337). In 1319, the Catalans entered into a treaty with the Venetians, which was renewed in 1321, according to which Don Alfonso maintained Karystos under his jurisdiction. Venice bought Karystos in 1365/6. The official dominion of Venice spread gradually throughout Euboea.

Many years later, during the Ottoman period (1470 – 1830) the Turks fortified the castle even more impressively [2]. During the period of 1821 War of Independence, Omer Bei of Karystos repaired the castle and constructed a new wall on the south part and a yard on the west side [2]. It was only after the liberation, in 1833, that the castle gates were opened to the Greeks [3].

[1] Foundation of the Hellenic World, ‘Latin occupation in Greek Islands’ (info, in English:
[2] Institute of Regional Development – Centre of Cultural Development, 2003 (info, in Greek:
[3] Vlami V.– OIKOS (info: – Nature Management Ltd, Evia Prefecture Local Authority, 2006. The Region of Ochi

What is happening nowadays?

Tourism is a serious threat to the castle. Today, no definition of the outer / broader archaeological area exists. In 2004 the subject was a major issue for the people of Karystos. Today, a villa is built just around the next corner on the road from the castle to Mili village!

Monday, 16 April 2007

Monday, 2 April 2007 Padova / Italy

Driving outside Padova I stopped in a station for diesel. There, there are two options: feel on your own (fai da te) or to be served (servizio). The difference in price reaches 0,031 euro/lt, nearly 1 euro just to fill up a small car each time! Does it really matters? For Italians YES!
Just to mention:
1. Cars are filled with diesel and not with unleaded or super as in Greece
2. Would it be possible gas stations in Greece work in a similar way? What happened with the people that lost their jobs because of the ‘fai da te’ machines?
3. In Italy you can also find stations where you can wash your car on your own.
4. Are we all in the same union, EU?

Wednesday, 28 March 2007 Bremen / Germany

Tetrapods (concrete armor units) used in breakwaters and marine defence works – common features of landscape in coastal waters of urbanised areas.
A very good alternative use of Tetrapods (in front of the Hauptbahnhof in Bremen)

Tuesday, 27 March 2007 Wilhelmshaven / Germany

Flatfish in the corner of Parkstarasse & Marktstrasse in Wilhelmshaven
During the recent decades, flatfishes are candidates for the commercial aquaculture in Europe.

Sunday, 25 March 2007 – Berlin / Germany

The European Union is turning 50 (since the signing of the Treaties of Rome in 1957). German Government hosted a huge open-air festival around the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin for the occasion (info: Europafest at Brandenburger Tor /

At stand No 71 the Federal Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Consumer Protection (‘Bundesministerium für Ernährung, Landwirtschaft und Verbraucherschutz’ - gave plastic bags made from vegetable starch (!).

Tuesday, 6 March 2007

5 March 2007

Qualifying round of FAME LAB, organized by the British Council in Greece
(more info:

Fame Lab is a national talent competition to find the best new talent in science communication.

Position: 3rd runner - up FAME LAB finalist

My presentation, written (& in English!):

Nowadays, we all speak about genetically modified organisms; they are the live organisms which were created artificially with the abstraction or with the addition of genes that emanates from organisms that can belong even in completely different species. Genetically modified is a gene that has undergone mutation. Mutation is the process of modification of constitution of a cell. We say no to genetically modified organisms and yes to biodiversity, which means yes to the variety of life.

To the list of negative factors that affect marine biodiversity, we must add ‘‘genetic pollution’’. By this we mean alteration of the natural genetic architecture and microevolutionary processes of wild populations due to the gene flow from farmed conspecifics that have escaped from aquaculture plants (see: Cognetti et al., 2006). Aquaculture escapes might constitute a potential risk to the genetic integrity of wild populations of the species (see: De Innocentiis et al., 2004).

The native species sea bream Sparus auratus and sea bass Dicentrarchus labrax are the principal species of marine aquaculture in the Mediterranean.

Farming generates rapid genetic change, as a result of both intentional and unintentional selection in culture that alters important fitness-related traits. Unlike nature, culture facilities provide predator-free, high-density, rapid growth environments that can affect the morphological, behavioural, and life-historical development of the fish. Finally, the human-engineered breeding patterns and the culture environment imposed on the fish create intentional and unintentional selection that can result in domestication over a few generations. Unlike the sea-ranched fish, the farmed fish are cultured throughout their lives and never exposed to natural selection for swimming performance. Additionally, they have been subjected to directed artificial selection for rapid growth based on body weight (see: Fleming & Einum, 1997).

Wild populations, generally, are at risk from interactions with aquaculture fish that have been subject to domestication (Youngson et al., 2001).

In any case however the fishes emanate from mariculturist stations. There big fish are carefully chosen to spawn million of juveniles. Finally, juveniles are lead to cages to the marine environment. There, either because of physical conditions (bad weather, high waves etc.) or because people that are against farms tear up the nets, fish escape.

The greater the genetic difference, the greater the likelihood that releases will alter the genetic diversity or genetic composition of the natural population.


-Castilho R. & Y. Ciftci, 2005. Genetic differentiation between close eastern Mediterranean Dicentrarchus labrax (L.) populations. Journal of Fish Biology; 67: 1746–1752.
-Cognetti G., Maltagliati F., & M. Saroglia, 2006. Editorial: The risk of ‘‘genetic pollution’’ in Mediterranean fish populations related to aquaculture activities. Marine Pollution Bulletin; 52: 1321–1323.
-De Innocentiis S., Lesti A., Livi S., Rossi A. – R., Crosetti D. & L. Sola, 2004. Microsatellite markers reveal population structure in gilthead sea bream Sparus auratus from the Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean Sea. Fisheries Science; 70: 852–859.
-Fleming I. A. & S. Einum, 1997. Experimental tests of genetic divergence of farmed from wild Atlantic salmon due to domestication. ICES Journal of Marine Science, 54: 1051-1063.
-Youngson A. F., Dosdat A., Saroglia M. & W. C. Jordan, 2001. Genetic interactions between marine finfish species in European aquaculture and wild conspecifies. Journal of Applied Ichthyology; 17: 153-162.

Sunday, 11 February 2007

Monday, 15 January 2007

13-19 April 2003: Euromed Regional E.GE.A. Congress

13-19 April 2003. Euromed Regional E.GE.A. KALLONI – LESVOS – GREECE*
Congress «Out of the map: Local Geographies of a Mediterranean island». Workshop: Salt marshes and brackish ecosystems.

Organized by:
Yiorgos Kyriazis (workshop leader) & Christina Kontaxi (workshop assistant)

1. Tobias Umlauft EGEA LEIPZIG
2. Alexsandra Privsek EGEA LJUBLJANA
3. Maja Walczak EGEA WARSAW
4. Karsten Schacht EGEA MUENSTER
5. Bibisidoy Katerina EGEA SALONICA


Salinas Operation Principles
• Seawater as the primary material
• Earth, in the form of the impermeable clay soil on which the water is held
• Solar energy
• Wind energy
Resulting in:
• Evaporation of the sea water
• Crystallization of the salt

Required natural features
1. A large littoral expanse of relatively flat land characterized by virtually impermeable soil
2. Weather favoring negative water balance (High rates of evaporation, minimal rainfall while the salt is being produced)

Mediterranean Salinas classification
- primitive or artisanal salinas, in which salt is gained with little or no human intervention, mainly collected from nature (e.g. rocky coasts, closed lagoons etc).
- traditional salinas, comprising small compartments and crystallizers that can be efficiently operated by one or two persons. They are characterized by intense human presence in all stages of salt-making.
- semi-industrial salinas (rather saltworks), with relatively large compartments and crystallizers. They are still characterized by involvement of man and are manually operated at least for salt harvest.
- fully mechanized huge industrial saltworks, with almost no manual operation, that are extremely large and economically profitable.

Fully mechanized saltworks
• Saltpans in serial connection (salt is concentrated to saturation in successive basins)
• Crystalizers (rectangular flat basins where the saturated brine is introduced periodically and deposits on the bottom a layer of salt 8 to 17cm thick)
• Reservoirs (brine storage against rainfall)
• Pumping stations (brine transfer)
• Canals, gates, small bridges (control of the flow of brine)
• Equipment for harvesting, transporting, washing and storing the salt.
• Weather station
• Chemistry laboratory (quality control)

Greek Salinas
1. Messi Rodopi (saltworks belonging to Hellenic Saltworks SA)
2. Kesani – Xanthi (saltworks belonging to Hellenic Saltworks SA)
3. M.Emvolo – Thessaloniki (saltworks belonging to Hellenic Saltworks SA)
4. Kitros Pieria (saltworks belonging to Hellenic Saltworks SA)
5. Lefkimmi – Kerkyra (dormant saltworks owned by the Greek State)
6. Kopraena – Arta (dormant saltworks owned by the Greek State)
7. Alexandros – Lefkas (dormant saltworks owned by the Greek State)
8. Messolonghi (saltworks belonging to Hellenic Saltworks SA)
9. Tourlis (saltworks belonging to local authorities)
10. Lehaena – Ilia (dormant saltworks owned by the Greek State)
11. Katastari – Zakynthos (dormant saltworks owned by the Greek State)
12. Kopanas – Evia (dormant saltworks owned by the Greek State)
13. Anavyssos – Attiki (dormant saltworks owned by the Greek State)
14. Lemnos (saltworks under construction)
15. Kalloni - Lesvos (saltworks belonging to Hellenic Saltworks SA)
16. Polichnitos – Lesvos (saltworks belonging to Hellenic Saltworks SA)
17. Samos (dormant saltworks owned by the Greek State)
18. Adamas – Milos (saltworks belonging to Hellenic Saltworks SA)
19. Tigaki – Kos (dormant saltworks owned by the Greek State)
20. Kythira (saltworks belonging to local authorities)

Greek Saltworks: expansion and potential
Messolonghi: surface 1,162 (hectares) – potential 120,000 (metric tons)
Kitros Pieria: surface 362 (hectares) – potential 40,000 (metric tons)
Kalloni – Lesvos: surface 263 (hectares) – potential 40,000 (metric tons)
Polichnitos – Lesvos: surface 60 (hectares) – potential 10,000 (metric tons)
Messi Rodopi: surface 140 (hectares) – potential 15,000 (metric tons)
N.Kesani – Xanthi: surface 90 (hectares) – potential 5,000 (metric tons)
M.Emvolo – Thessaloniki: surface 105 (hectares) – potential 5,000 (metric tons)
Adamas – Milos: surface 50 (hectares) – potential 8,000 (metric tons)

FIND MORE: ALAS (ALl About Salt)

Lesvos is the third largest of the Greek Islands. The island comprises 1632 km2, with a maximum length of 70 km and width of 45 km. The island is closer to the Turkish mainland than the Greek mainland, being only 14 km west of Turkey across the Aegean Sea. There is a general ginko leaf-like appearance to the island of Lesvos. This appearance derives from the two gulfs, which divide the island into three unequal parts (Gulf of Yera, in the east & Gulf of Kalloni, in the west). The gulfs are, in all likelihood, a product of local response, in the form of grabens, to regional tectonism.

The compound interaction of the closing of the Mediterranean in the north–south direction and the westward movement of Anatolia Turkey has contributed to the production, as well as uplift and exposure of metamorphosed rocks. Extrusive igneous materials overlie these, in turn. The rocks have also been subjected to lateral motion that produced low angle faults. Regional crustal uplift and tension produced a series of horsts and grabens bounded by near vertical faults. The subduction and collision has caused deformation, metamorphism, and overthrusting with the superposition of multiple convergent events. Crustal extension formed grabens, which are associated regionally with numerous hot springs and extrusive lava flows. Two major sets of lineaments: one NE–SW and the other, NW–SE. The dip-direction of these faults suggests that northeast to southwest tension produced the grabens oriented NW–SE, and the faults oriented NW–SE were produced by northeast to southwest tension. In the central part of the island there is a series of volcanic centres, situated along a SW-NE direction.

Lesvos suffered at least three post-volcanic tectonic events since Miocene. The first one produced E-W to ENE-WSW trending sinistral strike-slip faults in Late Miocene. The second during Pliocene, caused NW-SE trending normal faults and NNE-SSW trending sinistral strike-slip faults. The third during Pleistocene produced the orientation of the strain ellipsoid changed and an extentional event in the N-S direction took place. It produced E-W trending normal faults ant the reactivation of the pre-existing structures. This tectonic regime seems to be still active in the area. The intense volcanic activity in the area left a large number of active surface thermal manifestations (hot springs, various geothermal fields, etc).

The geological structure of Lesvos island consists of the following rock-units:
-An autochthonous unit of Permo-Triassic age, including schists, quartzites, metasandstones, phyllites and intercalation of marbles and crystalline carbonates, widely extended on the Southeast part of the island. - An ophiolitic nape, comprising basic and ultrabasic rocks and associated deep-sea fine-grained sediments, as well as metamorphic rocks, amphibolites and amphibole schists, metabasites and metasediments, parts of the sole, overthrusted the metamorphic basement.All these alpidic and pre-alpidic rocks were covered later by post-alpine volcanic rocks and Neogene marine and lacustrine deposits such as whitish marls, marly limestone, silts and sandstone, as well as Tertiary deposits.-Neogene volcanic rocks in the central and western part of the island. Lesvos is part of a belt of late Oligocene - middle Miocene calc-alcaline to shoshonitic volcanism of the northern and central Aegean Sea and western Anatolia.

The climate of Lesvos is dry to semi dry and is temperate-Mediterreranean. It has strong spatial and seasonal variations in rainfall and high oscillations between minimum and maximum daily temperatures.1) a hot dry summer period from April to October with a mean temperature of 26.1°C, and total rainfall of 14.7 mm2) a cool-wet winter period from November to March with a mean temperture of 10.4°C. Rainfall is concentrated in this period with a peak of 152 mm in December. The average annual rainfall fluctuates from 725 mm in the eastern part of the island to only 415 in the western part. An intermediate semi-arid region can also be distinguished.The long-term rainfall records in Mytilene show a decrease in rainfall of about 35% in the last 20 years.

The island is interspersed with plains, though it is dominated by mountains (two major peaks are Mt. Olympus 968m and Mt. Lepetimnos 968m)

Very steep (slope>35%) 43.9%Steep (slope 25-35%) 10.2%Moderately steep (slope>18-25%) 13.1%Moderately sloping and strongly sloping soils 17.5%Nearly level to gently sloping soils 15.3%
18% of the island is cultivated

Land use changes in recent years include:

-Agricultural land becoming pasture-Abandonment of annual crops, mainly legumes and cereals, especially in teracces -Abandonment of perrenial trees as almonds, and figs -Abandonment of olive cultivation in big slopes, this area became pasture-Reducing the oak trees because of overgrazing
Cultivated land consists mainly of olive plantations, but also annual crops. Pastures contain trees (both decidous and conifer), to provide necessary shadow. Forests are made up of pines. The area covered with water is a wetland, and thus an important ecosystem with respect to biodiversity.
The main crop is olive trees, and farms are very small in Lesvos.


The gulf is a closed, shallow bay (20 km long, 10 km wide, average depth 10 m) connected to the open Aegean Sea through a 4 km-long narrow channel.
The surface of Kalloni gulf is 110 km2 and the total water volume is 1,3 km3.
The water mass circulation inside the bay is wind driven. The renewal rate of water masses in the semi-enclosed coastal ecosystems controls the presence and distribution of the marine organisms.
The water exchange between semi-enclosed marine areas and the open sea enhance the results of the inflow of agricultural leaching and urban wastes.

Total catchment's area = 270km2
Total surface area of the gulf = 115km2
Total surface of fields = 30km2
The rest is mountains (mainly north-northwest part)
West: maximum height 650-700m
East: maximum height 350 m

Eastern part: ophiolitic nape
Western part: Neogene volcanic rocks
North and northeast: alluvial and coastal processes

All the rivers of the area ‘follow’ the direction of lineaments. Most important being ‘Tsiknias’ and ‘Mylopotamos’

East side
Nyfida bay – river/stream ‘Lagkada’
Polychnitos and Polychnitos saltmarshes – rivers ‘Lounta’, ‘Makri’ and ‘Vouvari’
Low wave action- river/stream dominate
Swamp/Salinas: Skala Polychnitos and Vouvari

North side
Alluvial field of kalloni
Rivers: ‘Kryoneri’ eastwards, ‘Tsiknias’, ‘Mylopotamos’ and ‘Potamia’ westwards
Sandbars W-E because of the general water circulation

West side
Rocky beaches (Neogene volcanic rocks)
Exception deltaic plane of Parakoila and in the SW
Most important: Kalloni wetland
The Kalloni wetland extends over a large part (<50%)>
EGEA Tartu:

Info from participants:
Croatia – County of Zadar – Tourist Association
Slovenia – Tourist Board & Ljubljana

Selected bibliography in English

-Davis, J.S., 2000. Structure, function, and management of the biological system for seasonal solar saltworks. International Journal Global Nest, Vol. 2, No 3, 217-226pp (
-Kontogianni, A., Skourtos, M.S., Langford, I.H., Bateman, I.J. & S. Georgiou, 2001. Integrating stakeholder analysis in non-market valuation of environmental assets. Ecological Economics, Vol. 37, Issue 1, 123-138pp. -Novak, I. D. & N. Soulakellis, 2000. Identifying geomorphic features using LANDSAT-5/TM data processing techniques on Lesvos, Greece. Geomorphology, Vol. 34, Issues 1-2, 101-109pp.
-Panayotidis P., Feretopoulou J. & B. Montesanto, 1999. Benthic Vegetation as an Ecological Quality Descriptor in an Eastern Mediterranean Coastal Area (Kalloni Bay, Aegean Sea, Greece). Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science, Vol. 48, Issue 2, 205-214pp.
-Skourtos M.S., Kontogianni, A., Langford, I.H., Bateman, I.J. & S. Georgiou, Integrating stakeholder analysis in non-market valuation of environmental assets, CSERGE Working Paper GEC 2000-22 (

Wednesday, 10 January 2007

EC Youth Programme, Action 1 - Youth for Europe: Youth Exchange*

2-10 September 2006
‘Culture & Biodiversity: paths without frontiers’, Prefectures of Kilkis & Serres, Greece

Host group:
Greece: Mediterranean Information Office for Environment, Culture and Sustainable Development (MIO-ECSDE) (info: & Friends of the Balkan Flora

Sending groups:
Bosnia & Herzegovina: Center for Environment, Growing up healthy, Action against AIDS
Croatia: Ekokvarner (info:, Lijepa Naša (info: & Plavi Val
Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia: Biosfera Bitola (info:
Italy: Legambiente (info: & Italia Nostra (info:
Portugal: Etnia, Terra chà, & City Council of Angra do Heroísmo – CM-AH (info:
Serbia: Danube Environmental Forum of Serbia & Montenegro – DEF S&M (info:
Slovenia: Society of Bird Research and Nature Protection - DPPVN
Spain: Mediterrania-CIE (

Visits to the host country:
Balkan Botanic Garden of Kroussia (info:
Laboratory of Protection and Evaluation of Native and Floricultural Species of the Greek National Agricultural Research Foundation (info:
Ecological Centre Kerkinis - Mpelles ‘Oikoperiigitis’ (info:
Lake Doirani (more info: Goulandri Natural History Museum – Greek Biotope/Wetland Centre: ‘Lake Doiran, a transborder wetland’: (info:

‘Culture & Biodiversity: paths without frontiers’ on the internet:
Mediterranean Information Office for Environment, Culture and Sustainable Development (MIO-ECSDE)
Mediterranean Education Initiative for Environment and Sustainability (MEDIES)
City Council of Angra do Heroísmo – CM-AH
Arturo’s Gallia photos:

12-22 October 2005
For a new water culture, Aitoloakarnania-Athens, Greece

Host group:
Mediterranean SOS Network (info:

‘For a new water culture’ on the internet
Mediterranean SOS Network: &

Lecture about: Water Resources in Greece & EU Water Framework Directive 2000/60
(See full text)

2-11 September 2005
European Youth for a new water culture, Torino Di Sangro - Costa dei Trabocchi, Provincia di Chietti, Italy

Host group:
Italy: ARCI (info:

Sending groups:
Bulgaria: OPENMIND
Greece: Mediterranean SOS Network (info:
Portugal: 3pontos – Ambiente, Arte e Cultura (info:
Romania: Asociatia de Asistenta si Programe pentru Dezvoltare Durabila – Agenda21

Visits to the host country:
Comune di Torino di Sangro (info:
Camping Sangro (

‘European Youth for a new water culture’ on the internet:
3pontos – Ambiente, Arte e Cultura: Download ‘Boletim Informativo” Contrapontos 01:

15-24 July 2005
Cultural Recycling: Re-orienting Cultures towards Sustainability, Evia Island-Greece

Host group:
Greece: Mediterranean Information Office for Environment, Culture and Sustainable Development (MIO-ECSDE) (info:

Sending groups:
Egypt: AOYE – Arab Office for Youth and Environment (
France: Association U Marinu – CPIE Bastia Golo Méditerranée (
Greece: Mediterranean SOS Network (info:
Italy: ITALIA NOSTRA (info:
Lebanon: AMWAJ of the Environment (info:
Morocco: CMEPE – Moroccan Club for Population and Environmental Education & SPANA - Société Protectrice des Animaux et de la Nature (info:
Slovenia: DPPVN – Society of Bird Research and Nature Protection
Spain: MEDITERRANIA, Centre d'Iniciatives Ecològiques (info:
Tunisia: APNEK – Association for the Protection of Nature & Environment, Kairouan (info: & ADPE - Association of Development and of the Protection of the Environment
Turkey: TEMA – Turkish Foundation for Combating Soil Erosion for Reforestation and the Protection of Natural Habitats (info:

‘Cultural Recycling: Re-orienting Cultures towards Sustainability’ on the internet:
Mediterranean Information Office for Environment, Culture and Sustainable Development (MIO-ECSDE)
Mediterranean Education Initiative for Environment and Sustainability (MEDIES)


Water Resources in Greece & EU Water Framework Directive 2000/60

Water Resources in Greece

Hydrological conditions in Greece are characterized by a considerable variability in space and time.
§ The mean annual rainfall ranges usually from 1200 to 400 mm. There is a general reduction from West to East and from North to South
§ There are about 250 river basins
§ Only 13 rivers have a minimum summer discharge capacity over 3 m3/sec. Six of them are trans-boundary rivers in the northern part of the country
§ The main lakes are formed in the mountainous and semi-mountainous zones of the continental part of the country. Generally they are not deeper than 50 m and they cover surfaces less than 100 Km2
§ The hydro geological structure in Greece is very complicated. The main aquifers are developed in sedimentary rocks (sands, gravels, karstic limestones etc)
The main authorities holding networks for quantity and quality observations are the:
• Ministry of Agriculture
• Ministry for the Environment and Public Works
• Public Power Corporation
• Hellenic National Meteorological Service
• Institute for Geological and Mining Research
The existing meteorological stations are more than 1000 and the hydrometric stations are about 170. There are also 650 observatory wells. The quality network reaches the 1000 observation points. The above mentioned authorities created at 1996 a National Data Base in which all the collected data are stored.
- The mean annual water potential in Greece is about 70 x 109 m3 and the total annual water use is estimated to reach about 8, 7 x 109 m3
- At this time 198.000 production wells and 65 dams are in operation
- The water use in agriculture attains 83-85 % whereas the domestic use is only 10-12 % (industrial use = 2%)
- The total irrigated area attain 1,32 x 106 ha
- The irrigated area which is managed by the 10 General and the 442 Local Land Reclamation Boards reaches 0,52 x 106 ha (40%) whereas the area irrigated by private irrigation projects (usually production wells) amounts to 0,8 x 106 ha (60%).

Law 1739 (1987)
Main problems:
§ Greece separated into water regions
§ 153 legislatives never existed!
§ economic problems
§ problems between the ministries (who is responsible?)
§ based on the regions divided 14 ‘water sections’ were introduced
§ in total, Greece has around 250 water basins

New Law (2003) based on the directive 2000/60 EU
Main problem is that the new directive considers as a management base the watershed
Not the entire EU directive is considered

Additionally, in Greece already:
a) Everything is being decided by regions (regions #watersheds)
b) Water from a watershed is being transferred to another (e.g.. Water in Athens comes from West-Central Greece)

In Greece, because of economic difficulties in the 70s there are only few surface water reservoirs constructed: 65 in total.
There are:
3 dams & 1 natural water reservoir for the needs of the capital Athens
16 reservoirs for producing hydroelectric energy
4 dams constructed by the Ministry of Environment & Public works
42 reservoirs (dams & water tanks) constructed by the Ministry of Agriculture
A lot of underground water resources exploitation has resulted in the intrusion of saline water & in the pollution of water by agrochemicals

Hydrographic Network
1. Aliakmonas 297m
2. Acheloos 220m
3. Pineios 205m
4. Evros 204m*
5. Nestos 130m*
6. Strimonas 118m*
7. Kalamas 115m
8. Alfeios 110m
9. Araxthos 110m
10. Eyrotas 82m
(*length in Greek territory)
1. Trixonida 96,5km2
2. Volvi 75,6km2
3. Vegoritida 72,5km2
4. Lagada 47,9km2
5. Vistonida 45,6km2
6. Small Prespa 43,1km2*
7. Large Prespa 38,3km2*
8. Kastorias 28,5km2
9. Iliki 22,7km2
10. Pamvotida 19,1km2
(*surface in Greek territory)

Water Framework Directive (2000/60/EC)
European Commission

On 23 October 2000 the
“Directive 2000/60/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council, establishing a framework for the Community action in the field of water policy” or short
EU Water Framework Directive

Key Facts about the Global Water Situation
§ Less than 1% of the planet's water is available for human consumption
§ More than 1.2 billion people have no access to save drinking water
Key Facts about the European Water Situation
§ 20% of all surface water in the European Union is seriously threatened with pollution
§ Groundwater supplies around 65% of all Europe's drinking water
§ 60% of European cities overexploit their groundwater resources
§ 50% of wetlands have "endangered status" due to groundwater over-exploitation
§ The area of irrigated land in Southern Europe has increased by 20% since 1985

The Water Framework Directive expands the scope of water protection to all waters and sets a clear objectives that "good status" must be achieved for all European waters by 2015 and that sustainable water use is ensured throughout Europe*.
(*Member States & Candidate Countries)

Water is not a commercial product, it is a fragile resource
and should be seen as a heritage

First phase of water legislation (1975 & 1980)
§ Drinking Water– fish, shellfish & bathing water – Groundwater
Second phase of water legislation (1991)
§ Urban Waste Water Treatment Directive (about biological waste water treatment)
§ Nitrates Directive (water pollution by nitrates from agriculture)
1996: Directive for Integrated Pollution and Prevention Control (pollution from large industrial installations)
1998: Drinking Water Directive (review quality standards)
The Framework Directive:
• Protects all waters - rivers, lakes, coastal waters, and ground waters
• Sets up a system of management within river basins that recognizes that water systems do not stop at political borders
• Requires cross border co-operation between countries and all involved parties
• Ensures active participation of all stakeholders, including NGOs and local communities, in water management activities
• Ensures reduction and control of pollution from all sources like agriculture, industrial activity, and urban areas, etc.
• Requires water pricing policies and ensures that the polluter pays
• Balances the interests of the environment with those who depend on it

Directive contains: 26 Articles
1 Purpose
2 Definitions
3 Coordination of administrative arrangements within river basin districts
4 Environmental objectives
5 Characteristics of the river basin district, review of the environmental impact of human activity and economic analysis of water use
6 Register of protected areas
7 Waters used for the abstraction of drinking water
8 Monitoring of surface water status, groundwater status and protected areas
9 Recovery of costs for water services
10 The combined approach for point and diffuse sources
11 Programme of measures
12 Issues which can not be dealt with at Member State level
13 River basin management plans
14 Public information and consultation
15 Reporting
16 Strategies against pollution of water
17 Strategies to prevent and control pollution of groundwater
18 Commission report
19 Plans for future Community measures
20 Technical adaptations to the Directive
21 Regulatory committee
22 Repeals and transitional provisions
23 Penalties
24 Implementation
25 Entry into force
26 Addressees

Important deadlines of the Directive:
• 2003
National and regional water laws to be adapted to the Water Framework Directive River Basin co-operation to be made operational
• 2004
An analysis of pressures and impacts on our waters to be completed including an economic analysis
• 2006
Monitoring programmes to be operational as a basis for water management
• 2008
River Basin Management plans to be presented to the public
• 2009
First River Basin Management Plans to be published
• 2010
Introduce pricing policies
• 2012
Operational programmes of measures
• 2015
Waters to meet "good status“
• 2021
First management cycle ends
• 2027
Second management cycle ends