In 2008 indications showed a significant peak of the salt contamination in the Tisza River that exceeded ten times over the average level. Since then, it was proved that the salt contamination in the Tisza River originates from the partially collapsed and flooded salt-mine of Solotvyno.
The project area lies in the south-western part of Ukraine, only some kilometres in a distance from the Romanian border. The border river between the two countries is the River Tisza. The River flows western direction, reaching the Slovakian and Hungarian border and entering the area of Hungary. The problem of the collapsing mine has not yet been solved. There are significant uncertainties arising from the mining area, in terms of collapses (craters), sinkholes and potential landslides, which could either, have a direct impact on human life as well as consequential effects on society and the economy.
In Dec. 2010, the situation in Solotvyno, Ukraine salt mine area was classified as an emergency by a decision of the Transcarpathian Regional State. Later this decision was approved also by the expert report of the Ministry of Emergency Situations of Ukraine. Beside the salt contamination that pollutes the ground and surface waters (River Tisza), the collapsing mine shafts imply continuous danger to human lives, infrastructure and cascading effects. In 2016 EU Civil Protection Team (including experts of EUSDR PA4 and the Hungarian national coordination) conducted risk assessment of the area and its surroundings. The Risk Assessment Report (RAR) contains different scenarios and 8 recommendation packages on the rehabilitation steps. The REVITAL I is the first activity that aims gradually bringing the RAR proposals into practice.
The main goal of the REVITAL I. is to set the foundation for the establishment of the revitalization process of the Solotvyno mine and surrounding area through deepened cross-border cooperation between Transcarpathia and adjacent areas. The project proposal approaches this goal through the achievement of 3 specific objectives: 1. to examine and evaluate the current environmental state of the Solotvyno salt mine and its wider surroundings (geological, geomorphological, structural, hydrogeological, hydrological surveys) with the aid of the cutting-edge technology, 2. to prepare the establishment of a complex monitoring system fitting into the wider regional framework for tracking the surface and near subsurface water qualitative and quantitative changes and the soil movements. 3. to raise awareness and promote the results of the project on different levels. This is important not only for the Solotvyno administration and its population, but due to the nature of the problem, also the settlements along the border and along the River Tisza basin.
The project will also draft Strategic Concept Note (a document with analysis and recommendations for further areas of work and will suggest in priority order activities for different stakeholder groups, all level decision making). For the realization of the project, 6 partners have gathered from the four countries (HU, SK, RO, UA).
The REVITAL I. project received a Letter of Recommendation from the EUSDR Water quality (PA4) and Environmental risks (PA5) priority areas in 2017.
Number of partners: 6 (4 ERDF, 2 ENI)
Project Lead Partner: Tisza European Grouping of Territorial Cooperation Limited Liability (Hungary/Ukraine)
Project Budget: cca. 1 million € (ERDF+ENI)
Project Duration: May 2019 – May 2021.
Project Manager: Ms Andrea Szabóné Cap
Contact Details: capandrea(at)tiszaett.hu
Funded by: INTERREG Hungary-Slovakia-Romania-Ukraine ENI CBC Programme, co-funded by the European Union (ERDF and ENI funds)