Groundwater Protection Zones in Rural Areas of Kosovo

Argjend Hajra1, Mario Roidt2, Thomas De Beyer2, Randolf Rausch3
1 Community Development Initiatives
2 Dorsch International Consultants
3 Dorsch International Consultants, Technische Universität Darmstadt

6.4 in Hydrogeologie in der Praxis

In the past decade, the Rural Water and Sanitation Support Program in Kosovo (RWSSP) funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) and implemented by Dorsch International Consultants and Community Development Initiative has significantly increased the access to public water supply of the rural population of Kosovo. However, water protection is still a challenge. While protecting wells with modelled groundwater protection zones, similar to German standards, is well stipulated by the law, the implementation of modelling based zones is yet to be achieved. The programme is thus supporting the regional water companies of Kosovo to protect water resources used for public water supply.

This poster is about the process of pioneering groundwater protection zones in rural areas of Kosovo. This involves the full process of establishing water source protection zones for public groundwater wells and reveals the technical and administrative challenges and lessons learned when doing so.

We aim to show how the technical investigations evolved from hydrogeological descriptions and analytical methods to hydrogeological computer models developed with modflow. The aim of the project is to prepare five technical studies about different well-fields with an increasing level of accuracy and reliability. Well-fields are often located in the large plain directed northwest-sout, ranging from Mitrovica through Pristina to Kaçanik/Kačanik of 70 km length and 15 km width and a height of 550 – 570 m asl. formed by fluvial processes.

From an administrative point of view the poster shows which processes need to be set in motion such as approval of the hydrogeological studies by the Ministry of Environment and Spatial Planning, adoption of municipal land use plans, clarification of roles and responsibilities of the respective stakeholders on implementation of the proposed protection measures and finally the implementation and monitoring of the water source protection zones. A focus will be the new Administrative Instruction issued in 2017 which serves as a good basis for water source protection yet is confronted with challenges in practice.