Priority Area 5

To Manage Environmental Risks

Flood response in Hungary, 2006


The European Union Strategy for the Danube Region (EUSDR) was adopted in 2011, in order to increase growth and strengthen cooperation at a macro-regional level through priority areas. As territorial development framework, the main aim is to reduce disparity and harmonise development policies connecting 14 countries in the Danube Region.

Flood risk management is a significant target of the Environmental Risks Priority Area (PA5). In order to achieve reduction of flood risk events EUSDR PA5 provides and enhance continuous support to the implementation of the Danube Flood Risk Management Plan. As part of prevention measures, PA5 supports the assessment of disaster risks in the Danube Region, encouraging actions to promote disaster resilience, preparedness and response activities.

The Disaster Management Working Group (DM-WG) was established to concentrate on emergency response and preparedness elements of managing environmental risks. Extending the cooperation and joint efforts of the countries in the Danube Region presents an opportunity for reaching a common understanding and developing standards at regional level.

One of the targets of EUSDR PA5 is to "support the assessment of disaster risks in the Danube Region, encouraging actions to promote disaster resilience, preparedness and response activities in line with the European Union Civil Protection Mechanism". In order to achieve this target, Action 3 from the Action Plan of EUSDR.

Action 3. Strengthen disaster prevention and preparedness among governmental and non-governmental organizations

3.1 Support joint preparedness activities (e.g. regional exercises, joint training activities, sharing know-how, standardization of capacities) of disaster response actors (professional and volunteer, at operational, tactical and strategic level);

3.2. Harmonized training and capacity building of civil protection units (based on European Union Civil Protection Mechanism) to improve coordination, interoperability, procedures and self-sufficiency;

3.3. Support disaster risk reduction at regional and local level, raising public awareness;

3.4. Innovation and technology to support disaster response (VR, drone, IT solutions, mapping).

Strategic objectives of DM-WG:

  • support the European Union Civil Protection Mechanism (DG ECHO) in cross-border and regional level disaster management with the involvement of authorities and (volunteer) non-governmental organizations;

  • cooperate with International Commission for the Protection of Danube River in all activities concerning water management to achieve good synergy and to contribute to their work with disaster response viewpoint;

  • trigger discussions and activities concerning disaster preparedness and response elements in the management of environmental risks;

  • work on the development of recommendations for volunteer organizations involved in disaster response in the Region;

  • support this initiative at policy level by developing “Minimum standards for civil protection organizations and fire and rescue services involved in international or cross-border disaster response in the Danube Region”;

  • identify existing practices and procedures to minimize duplications;

  • provide a platform for cooperation between relevant stakeholders of the 14 Danube countries in the field of disaster management.

PA5 also address the challenges of water scarcity and droughts in line with the Danube River Basin Management Plan, the report on the impacts of droughts in the Danube and the ongoing work in the field of climate change adaptation. Therefore, in the past few years EUSDR PA5 supported projects in the field of drought management and climate change related spatial planning as well, also disseminated scientific results to anticipate regional and local impacts of climate change through research.

The coordination of PA5 is managed by Hungary and Romania.

For more information, visit our website.

EUSDR PA5 brochure
DAREX 2019Danube Region Exercise for International flood response
EU Strategy for the Danube Region Priority Area 5 to Manage Environmental Risks
Ministry of Environment, Waters and Forests