The working draft  Developing (creating) of the deepwater fairway  Danube – Black Sea on the Ukrainian part of the Delta. Full development was worked out in 2004 by request of the State-run Enterprise Delta – Lotsman, The project was developed by the Engineering and Design technological institute of  river transport RICHTRANSPROEKT on the basis of:

  • Assignment for development of  the working draft, approved by SE Delta-Lotsman
  • Decree of the President of Ukraine 502/2003 of June 10, 2003
  • Regulation of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine 598- of Oct. 13th 2003 On approval of the working draft and title of the DWF construction;
  • Decree of the President of Ukraine 117/2004 of February 2nd 2004 On enhancing the territory of the Danube biosphere reserve.
  • Architectural-planning assignment, approved by the department of townplanning and architecture  Odessa Region State Administration  of Aug. 25, 2004.

The following parties took part in the developing of the working draft:

  • SE Delta – Lotsman – intermediate work, navigation safety system justification).
  • Danube hydrometeorological observatory – hydrogeological, hydrological and hydromorphological characteristics of the deepwater fairway bed of Danube – Black Sea at the length of the Kiliya Delta.
  • Research center NOOSFERA  - justification and developing of  sea ground dump 
  • Ukrrybproect Institute – fish protection measures
  • The State  Enterprise Gosgidrografiya – development and justification of the decisions on location and configuration of the navigation equipment of the marine approach canal  to the Bystroe mouth.
  • Institute of Hydromechanics of the National Academy of Science of Ukraine -  R&D on optimization of technical solutions on the bed and sand  bar areas of the deep water fairway.
  • Ukrainian Scientific Research Institute of Ecological Problems (USRIEP) of the Ministry of Environmentand Natural Resources of Ukraine - research scientific work Environmental effects assessment

In pursuance of the Decree of the President of Ukraine 502/2003  of June 10, 2003, at the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine behest, there was performed the complex state examination of the feasibility study of the projects on renewal of navigation on the Ukrainian site of the Danube. Among 10 Ukrainian projects on deepwater fairway Danube – Black Sea, the Bystroe mounth project was recognized as the best project from the economic, environmental, technical and other points of view.

The working draft  Creation of the DWF Danube – Black Sea on the Ukrainian site of the delta. 1st phase was approved by the Resolution of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine 83- of May 12th, 2004. The German Company Josef Mobius Bau – Aktiengeselschaft was awarded the tender  on the general contract for developing of the fairway under the condition of attracting the state – owned enterprises Ukrvodshlyakh and Chorazmorshlyakh for carrying out the work.  

The construction under this project started on May 15th  2004 and continued until May 2005 (with the breaks at the period of storms and fish spawning).  At the same time with the constrcution in August 2004,  the DWF navigation was opened for the vessels with the draft  no more than 5.0 m. At the period of temporary operation over 700 vessels were piloted through the fairway.

In August 2004,  the Institute Richtransproect  completed and introduced for the state examination the working draft Creation of the DWF Danube – Black Sea on the Ukrainian site of the delta. Full development. The state examination was completed during November – December, as well as the positive exerts’ conclusions of all related expertise, except the environmental issue.  The State Ecological assessment  of the project was conducted from Aug. 10 2004 to April 19 2006, that became the reason of delay in preparation of the project  for approval.

In June 2005 in accordance with the requirements of the Ministry for Environmental protection of Ukraine, taking into consideration the Ministry of Foreign Affairs recommendations and environmental NGOs requests, the construction work was stopped, dredgers and construction equipment of the German Company Josef Mobius Bau – Aktiengeselschaft were relocated. In spite of the fact that the prohibition of the Ministry for Environmental protection of Ukraine was cancelled in July 2005, the construction work of the 1st phase of DWF was not resumed.   Due to suspension of construction work as well as long  spring – summer high water flood and three extremely strong  rain floods in July – September 2005,  unfinished fairway was silted and the navigation became impossible.   

Construction suspension for more than 2 years resulted in significant negative economic consequences. According to the SE Delta – Lotsman, they are:

  • Total loss of  funds at the amount of UAH 29,2 mln., assimilated in 2004 for digging the cut  at  the  sea sand-bar within the 1st phase.
  • Non-receipt  by the SE Delta-Lotsman of the incomes from canal, pilot and other dues in 2005 at the amount of UAH 5 mln.
  • Ukrainian ports did not receive up to UAH 12 mln. – incomes from the port dues.
  • Ukrainian ports did not receive  up to UAH 15 mln. Incomes from pick-and-place jobs;
  • Losses up to UAH 8 mln – fees paid by the Ukrainian shipping companies for vessels passage through the Sulina canal.

The total amount of direct losses (construction cost increase) is about UAH 200 mln. Indirect losses include the losses of national and other companies of the sea business, as well as losses of the foreign companies which lost the possibility  to use more efficient and cheaper fairway. Freight owner and carriers suffered significant indirect losses.

At the same time with the beginning of construction, there was conducted complex ecological monitoring with participation of the leading institutes and organizations of Ukraine, including the National Academy of Science. USRIEP (Kharkov) summarizes the materials of monitoring. In accordance with the USRIEP report Complex ecological monitoring on environment on renewal of the deepwater fairway Danube – Black Sea  in 2005,  there was not found the signs of significant negative influence of the construction on the environment.

The institute of Hydromechanics of the National Academy of Science of Ukraine, Law Firm ANK LLC, Danube hydrometeorological observatory, the Institute of Mathematical Machines and Systems Problems (IMMSP) of the Ukraine National Academy of Science, International Association Ukrainian Land and Resource Management Center took part in the process of project finalizing with consideration of the remarks of environmental NGOs.  The additional research work confirmed the basic decisions made in the working draft .In the legal conclusions of the Law Firm ANK LLC, it was justified that  the construction of the  deep water fairway Danube – Black Sea on the Bystroe mouth contradicts neither Ukrainian environmental legislation, nor international obligations of  Ukraine on  the matters of environmental protection.

The finalized and submitted for consideration working draft specifies the following activities:

  • Elimination of the marine approach canal silting and the cuts at sand bars (force majéur circumstances);
  • Completion of 1st phase fairway construction;
  • Construction of the fairway on full development after the completion of the 1st phase or simultaneously with it
  • Recalculation of the estimates at the prices as of May 1st, 2006 taking into consideration the cost of performed work.
  • The navigation renewal on the fairway immediately after settlement of force majéur circumstances;

The projected fairway on its parameters belongs to the water ways of international significance; by the class of waterways – this is super main waterway (in accordance with the DSPU BV 2.3-1-95)   VII calss, in accordance with the European classification of waterways.    

So,  the following vessels have a possibility tp pass through the fairway – sea vessels   CO-5M type (length – 124,30m; width – 15,80 m; loaded draft – 5,50 m; deadweight  - 5590 ton), mixed river-sea-going vessels Bug type (length – 127,0 m; width – 16,0 m; loaded draft – 4,85 m; deadweight  – 6300 ton) and advanced vessels (length – 125,0 m, width – 17,0 m, loaded draft – 7,20 m, deadweight  – 8000-10000 ton).

Therefore, working draft and titles of the project: Creation of the deep water fairway Danube – Black Sea on the Ukrainian site of the delta have been approved by:

  • Resolution of the CMU 283- of May 12, 2004 – the 1st phase
  • Resolution of the CMU 351- of May 31, 2007 –  full development 

The main difference between the 1st phase project and the full development project is the difference in the vessel draft (5,85 m and 7,20 m relatively)  

In 2008 within the implementation of the Ukrainian DWF renewal project, completion of marine approach canal (from the point of view of the vessel draft – this has been a limiting area since 2004) and construction of levee (that was stopped during 2004-2007, the  percentage – of – completion – 5,5 % of the projected volume,  with spending 43,2 % of  the funds allocated for this period).

For the first time, the experimental navigation on the DWF was opened in August 2004  for the vessels with the draft  no more than 5,0 m   and only at daylight time (The Commission Act dated Aug. 19, 2004)

For the second time, the navigation was reopened in April 2007 for the vessels with the draft  no more than 4,5 m   (The Commission Act dated Aug. 19, 2004)

In 2008 the  draft of 5,85 m  projected for the 1st phase was achieved for the marine approach canal for the first time since the DWF was opened in 2004.  In 2008 the marine approach canal was commissioned as completed hydraulic structure with keeping the characteristics of the 1st phase.

On March 27, 2009, the German dam  (built in 2004 by the German Company Josef Mobius) was jointed and this resulted in full damming (overlapping) of northeastern shallows that increased the current speed and reduced the ground subsidence.   

International aspect of the DWF construction

In November 2007  Ukraine made the Final decision on implementation of project Creation of the DWF Danube – Black Sea on the Ukrainian site of the delta. Full development.

This decision was made without full execution of certain procedures, specified by the Espoo Convention (The Convention on Environmental Impact Assessment in a Transboundary Context), that caused the adoption of certain recommendation on restriction of the implementation of the second phase (Decision   IV/2) at the 4th Session of the Parties to the Espoo Convention (May 19-21, Bucharest).

After the decision was made, the work became more intensive

  • Notification on the creation of the DWF Danube – Black Sea, full development project was developed and sent for consideration to the Implementation Committee of the Espoo Convention.
  • The environmental impact assessment in a transboundary context was developed and sent to the Romanian Government and the Implementation Committee;
  • There was conducted the in-depth analysis of the results of Commission  on demand of UNECE of the Espoo Convention to minimize the   transboundary impact during the project implementation and making corresponding  design and technological decisions;
  • In October 2008 the joint consultations of the experts on  implementation of decisions IV/2 with adjustment of the main stages of implementation  were held in Kiev.
  • On June 9, 2009 in the city of Tulcha, Romania the public hearing on the Project, full development was help.
  • On June 15-16 2009 in Kiev Joint Ukrainian – Romanian Consultations on the Project Creation of the deep water fairway Danube – Black Sea on the Ukrainian site of the delta. Full development were held in accordance with the Regulations of the Article 5 of the Espoo Convention.

Due to the mentioned above measures, the procedures of the Espoo Convention regarding the legitimation of the Ukrainian project of the DWF Danube – Black Sea were fulfilled. Ukraine has  full authority to make the Final Decision on the Second Phase implementation.