Ukraine’s Construction of a Navigation Canal on the Chilia Arm of the Danube River
Multilateral and bilateral regulations in the field of environmental protection relevant to the Bystroe channel
5. The Convention concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage adopted in Paris, the 16th of November 1972.
According to its provisions, States Parties to the Convention commit themselves to ensure the identification, protection, conservation, and presentation of World Heritage Properties. States recognize that the identification and safeguarding of heritage located in their territory is primarily their responsibility. They agree to do all they can, using their own resources and, at times with international assistance, to protect their World Heritage Properties, They agree, amongst other things, to as far as possible:
-adopt a general policy which aims to give the cultural and natural heritage a function in the life of the community and to integrate the protection of that heritage into comprehensive planning progranmes'.
-undertake appropriate legal, scientific, technical, administrative and financial measures necessary for the identification, protection, conservation, presentation and rehabilitation and rehabilitation of this heritage'.
-refrain from 'any deliberate measures which might damage, directly or indirectly the cultural and natural heritage' of other Parties to the Convention, and to help other Parties in the identification and protection of their properties.
6. An agreement was made between the Ministry of Environment and Territorial Planning of the Republic of Moldavia, the Ministry of Waters, Forests and Environmental Protection of Romania and the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources of Ukraine on the Cooperation in the Zone of the Danube Delta and the Lower River Prut Protected Natural Areas (Bucharest, the 5th of May 2000).
This Agreement includes in its geographical scope the Danube Delta Reservation of Ukraine. In conformity with the provisions of this Agreement, the contracting parties undertook to control the economic activities so that they do not alter the characteristics of the natural protected area, as well as to coordinate among themselves in the framework of a Joint Commission as to the regional projects of development or administration in order to establish a joint management plan of the zone.
7. An agreement between the Governments of Romania and Ukraine was made on the cooperation in the management of border waters (Galatzi, the 30th of September 1997).
Under Article 2 (Objectives and Principles of the Cooperation), paragraph 3, "None of the parties may carry out on its territory:.. without prior consultation, any work which might modify the .flow or the quality standards of the border waters". As well, under Article 4 of this Agreement, the obligation to inform the other party about the projects which might have a negative impact in the territory of the other contracting state is stipulated in a similar way as that existing under other multilateral legal instruments. Thus, the party planning to take
actions that might have negative consequences in the territory of the other contracting state has the obligation to notify about its intentions the other contracting state and to transmit all data on the planned actions and to offer the possibility of the other contracting state to participate to the assessment of the impact of such actions on the border waters.
8. The Treaty between Romania and Ukraine on the Romanian-Ukrainian State Border Regime, Cooperation and Mutual Assistance in Border Matters, was signed at Cernautzi, on the 17th of June 2003, and entered into force on the 27th of May 2004.
This Treaty which contains provisions for all matters related to the regime of the State frontier provides, under Article 12, the obligations as to the management of the border waters. In accordance with this article, none of the parties may modify unilaterally the riverbeds, the banks or the flow regime of the border waters through works carried out on these waters; should such modifications occur, the party which carried out these unilateral works must bring the waters back at their initial condition. In Romanian experts' view, the building of a canal on the Bystroe channel is to bring about modifications on the Chilia Arm (which constitutes a Romanian-Ukrainian border water). Consequently, Romania is entitled under this Treaty as well, to request and receive explanations from Ukraine as to the envisaged actions – Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Environment and Water Management, Romania.