Environment Minister Laszlo Borbely said yesterday there were reasons of concern about the navigation on the Danube because of the very low discharge rates registered by tributaries lately. There are currently 250 ships resting at anchor near Calarasi. ‘It looks like the Bulgarian have a dragging issue, but there will be ministerial talks on that’, Borbely said, according to Mediafax. According to the minister, the discharge of the Danube and other rivers is still dropping, now standing at 60-65 per cent of the annual average. However, the minister says that, at least for now, there are no reasons to become seriously worried about the drought. ‘We will have to wait until September 30 – October 1 before we can draw the line and start thinking what to do. The forecast says the weather will be pretty much the same, meaning no rainfalls, until September 30’.
The minister also said the level of the water used to cool down the Cernavoda nuclear power station is 115 cm and that there are no problems as yet. The reduction of the Danube discharge at this time of the year has led to less electricity produced, but without affecting Hidroelectrica’s capacity to provide the system services required for a safe operation of the national grid. As far as the water supply to households and industry is concerned, the ‘Romanian Waters’ National Administration (ANAR) yesterday said the situation was so far good, discharges being enough to feed cities taking their water from the River Danube such as Drobeta-Turnu Severin, Turnu Magurele, Giurgiu, Braila, Galati, etc.
According to an ANAR press release, the Danube discharge at the point where it enters Romania, in the Bazias sector, yesterday recorded a slight decrease compared to the previous days – 2,350 cubic metres/second, below the multi-annual September average of 3,800 cubic metres/second. In the next period, the Danube discharge at Bazias will keep the current decreasing trend, being expected to fall to 2,250 cubic metres/second by September 25. The lowest Danube discharge in the last 50 years was recorded in 2003 – 1,600 cubic metres/second, says the quoted source.
25 vessels blocked in Bechet port
Yesterday, Dolj Border Police spokeswoman Veronica Constantin reported that a total of 25 vessels of which nine self-propelled ships and 16 barges were laying at anchor in the Bechet Port because of the latest low Danube level. ‘These vessels are high tonnage and have dropped the anchor at Bechet because the Danube is under the normal level. On the other hand, any ship without a freight move normally, the navigable channel is not closed’, the official said, according to Mediafax.