The common need that triggered the development of this project is the protection of the water resources of Axios-Vardar River, the sustainability of the ecosystem and the protection of its habitats. AQUA-M II includes major infrastructure works in Gevgelija, North Macedonia for the regulation of the riverbed Suva Reka  that contribute to the protection of water resources and their sustainable management and in particular to the control of flood phenomena’s.

Moreover since the harmonization of the North Macedonian Legislation with the EU Directive 2000/60 the country is steadily developing its capacity to monitor water bodies, even though important steps are still to take place. Similarly, in Greece the monitoring system in place can have significant improvements.

The project will provide the necessary financial resources for the establishment of special instruments (sensors) for water quality in three different points of Axios River. One in PP2 geographical area, one in PP4 and one in PP5. These sensors will be able to monitor the river’s water quality nearby their respective sewage treatment plants. This equipment will monitor and provide essential data for water quality in a continuous way (24h/7d) and in real time. It will be able to detect abnormalities in water physicochemical parameters and toxicity levels even in very low concentrations.

More over the Laboratory Equipment for the PP3 can analyse water samples from the river and detect the majority of pollutants (like pesticides, pharmaceuticals, organic and inorganic pollutants). Data from the equipment either as 24h measurements from the sensors or as laboratory inputs after water samples analysis will be recorded in an online platform that will work as a repository. Data will be disseminated in all 5 partners of the project and will act as an early warning system for the river’s water quality facilitating the local authorities to take the proper actions for the protection of the river and thus improve the conservation capacity for the ecosystem and of its habitats.

This early warning system the Axios-Vardar will serve as a reliable decision making tool in cases of emergencies in the riverside area in both border sides.