Water is a valuable commodity, vital for the preservation of the environment and life within it. Our activities in the water sector focus on protection and sustainable use, which will ensure a healthy and secure future for future generations. We are aware that changes in the natural water cycle are inevitable and are adequately prepared and trained to prevent or mitigate the harmful effects waters may have.
Integrated water resources management
Integrated water resources management means that, based on legislation and regulations comparable to European ones:
- good status of waters and other water-related ecosystems is ensured;
- the environment and people are protected against harmful effects of waters, e.g. floods;
- sustainable water use is promoted, taking into account the long-term protection of available water resources and their quality.
Integrated water resources management and related programmes also consider the growing impacts of climate change resulting from the uncontrolled burning of fossil fuels in recent decades.
Financial resources for the implementation of measures are drawn from the state budget, the Water Fund as the dedicated fund and from the funds available within various financial instruments of the European Union, and other sources.
Water status assessment in Slovenia
The quality of surface water has been gradually improving, but waters are still contaminated with substances that enter the water from various sources (e.g. paved surface and agricultural land, municipal and industrial wastewater, etc.).
In addition to pollution, one of the main causes of the poor status of surface waters are hydromorphological pressures. These include past regulations of riverbeds, improper land use in the water and riparian zone, water and alluvium abstractions , transverse structures, bypass channels and drainage systems.
The quantitative status of groundwater, an important source of potable water, is favourable. Groundwater is mainly contaminated with nitrates from agriculture, especially in north-eastern Slovenia. In order to protect water intended for public drinking water supply from pollution or other pressures that may affect the health compliance or quantity of such water, Slovenia is seeking to expand water protection areas.
Marine waters are typically polluted due to the many activities taking place at sea (maritime transport, fishing, fish and shellfish farming, and recreational boating) and on the coast (tourism, industry, agriculture and urbanisation).
In the past, they were overloaded with nutrients and pollutants, but the situation has improved due to adequate measures. However, marine habitats continue to deteriorate the situation of some species is getting worse, marine waters and the coast are polluted with waste and microplastics, and there is an increase in underwater noise.
International cooperation in water management
Slovenian waters are part of two river basin districts, the Danube river basin district, which consists of the Sava, Drava and Mura sub-basins, and the Adriatic Sea river basin district, which includes the Soča sub-basin and the basins of Adriatic rivers.
The river basin districts are part of international river basins; Slovenia thus cooperates with neighbouring countries within bilateral and multilateral commissions and is active in the context of broader international commissions and conventions. International cooperation facilitates the exchange of knowledge, best practices and procedures in water management. In this way, Slovenia contributes to more efficient spatial management and follows the principles of nature-friendly infrastructure, which enables a positive impact of the natural environment on people and society through the application of modern solutions for regulation and maintenance of watercourses.