Login News Terms & Conditions Gaeilge

Project Summary

The overall NS SHARE study area of 26,877 km² is equivalent to around ¼ of the land area of the island of Ireland and is a major river basin project.

The North Western River Basin District itself lies to the north-west of the project area and includes all of County Donegal and parts of counties Derry / Londonderry, Tyrone, Fermanagh, Longford, Cavan, Monaghan, Sligo and also Leitrim. The RBD has a total area of 14,792 km² including the marine elements and hence is the largest RBD within the NS SHARE project. The District covers a range of landscapes from the mountains of Donegal and the River Finn, to the flatter farm lands of Tyrone and Derry / Londonderry, and on to the lakelands of Lough Erne, and the drumlin belt of its southern sections. It also includes a very long and indented coastline from Donegal Bay around high cliffs and pocket beaches, to Lough Swilly and Lough Foyle. See the interactive map below showing the location of the River Basin District.

Interactive map showing the River Basin Districts
North Western International River Basin District Neagh Bann International River Basin District North Eastern River Basin District

This International River Basin District spans the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. A co-ordinated approach to implementation of the WFD will be undertaken by the Environment and Heritage Service (EHS) in the North and Local Authorities in the South.

The overall objective of the project is to strengthen inter-regional capacity for environmental monitoring and management capacity at the river basin district level, to improve public awareness and participation in the water management issues and to protect and enhance the aquatic environment and dependent ecosystems.

The NS Share River Basin District project is the vehicle for delivering the objectives of the WFD within the North South Share River Basin Districts between August 2004 and March 2008.

The following is a summary list of tasks set to achieve the objectives of the WFD in the NS SHARE Project:

  1. Development of ecological Classification Systems for water quality;
  2. Develop a mechanism to define Heavily Modified Water Bodies (HMWB) and Artificial Water Bodies (AWB); and determine the maximum ecological potential achievable;
  3. Produce a list of relevant dangerous substances and proposals for Environmental Quality Standards (EQS) for the candidate list. Review the analytical capabilities of the Relevant Agencies;
  4. Initial Characterisation of the Study Area;
  5. Prepare a register of protected areas;
  6. Prepare a pressure and impact analysis to identify to what extent human activities may be placing the attainment of the WFD environmental objectives at risk;
  7. Economic Analysis of water use;
  8. Geographical Information Systems and mapping;
  9. Review of monitoring needs;
  10. Further characterisation and the identification of significant water management issues;
  11. Development of a programme of measures;
  12. Prepare River Basin Management Strategies;
  13. Interested Party Participation
  14. Capacity building
  15. Harmonisation of methods/approaches to implementation of the WFD between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland

For further information on these issues you may find the European Commission website on the Water Framework Directive at http://europa.eu.int/comm/environment/water/water-framework/index_en.html to be of use.

Image of Rathmullen Nature Reserve Image of boat on a lough Image of Dromore Mound