Case study Burgas: Land-Sea Interactions

Abstract: 

The MARSPLAN-BS project elaborated five case studies of major challenges for three specific areas and two specific domains within the Romanian and Bulgarian maritime space: 1. Eforie Case Study – Romania; 2. Sfantu Gheorghe Case Study– Romania; 3. Burgas Case Study: land-sea interactions – Bulgaria; 4. Case Study on the establishment of a new ship routing system in territorial seas of Bulgaria and Romania; 5. Aquaculture and fisheries Case Study (Romania and Bulgaria).

Burgas is the fourth largest city in Bulgaria (South Bulgarian Black Sea coast) and one of the most important ports at the Black Sea with significant infrastructure for supporting the economic activities. Burgas is a leading centre of oil industry and it is distinguished with rapid developments over the recent years. In the surroundings of Burgas there are valuable natural protected areas (Natura 2000) and wetlands, important Ramsar sites, such as: lakes of Atanasovsko, Burgas and Mandra - Poda.

The intensity of both coastal and maritime activities in the study area has been constantly increased and new activities have been initiated or planned over the recent years, and that area is often in conflict with other activities or the objectives of environmental protection. Therefore, the case study is focused to investigate the land-sea interactions and the needs of maritime spatial planning. In Burgas Case Study it is aimed to:

  • follow the land-sea interactions with a special focus on biodiversity;
  • identify the impact of land infrastructure on wetlands and maritime space;
  • it is challenging to find out what are the interactions, conflicts and impacts between uses, sectors and interests both terrestrial and marine;
  • identify key stakeholders and involve them in the process of identifying current and future trends, sector priorities and interests;
  • develop and visualise different agenda options, recommendations and solutions for identified case area issues
Sea Basin(s): 
Country: 
Year: 
2017
Application in MSP: 
Applied in an MSP process
Sectors: 
Fishery
Nature protection
Oil and gas exploitation
Ports
Shipping
Tourism
Type of Issue: 
Coexistence of uses
Economic aspects
Ecosystem-based approach
Environment aspects
Land-sea interactions
Safety aspects
Social aspects
Type of practice: 
Study
Stage of MSP cycle: 
Analyse spatial aspects
Coherence with other processes: 
Habitats and Birds Directive
Integrated Coastal Zone Management
Marine Strategy Framework Directive

Questions this practice may help answer

  • Which maritime sectors a MSP related study should cover?
  • What conflicts in land-sea interaction could arise?
  • Which land / sea uses could be source of conflict?

Implementation Context

The case study is carried out within the DG MARE MARSPLAN-BS Project. It overviews and analyses the natural environment (nature values and landscapes, sea depth, water salinity, beaches, climate, cultural heritage) and environmental conditions (biodiversity, natural protected areas and wetlands, sea water pollution, erosion risks and flood hazards), the urban development and population growth, existing economic activities (coastal and marine tourism, fishing and aquaculture, maritime transport, ports and shipping, oil production and oil industry, salt production, military defence, etc.), potential interests and land/sea uses in the coastal and marine area of Burgas, as well as applicable EU and national regulations. In addition, the study has identified key stakeholders (Municipality of Burgas, Burgas Regional Administration, Port of Burgas, Petroleum Company, fisheries, scuba diving centres, tourist operators and hotel owners, NGOs and environmental organisations, etc.) and their involvement in coastal and marine-related activities.

The main land-sea interactions are identified on the basis of maps showing land/sea uses and natural values, as well as after analysis of the existing economic activities and natural landscape in the study area. The results are shown in a conflict/synergy (land-sea interactions) matrix (see the figure in “Main Outputs / Results” section).

Aspects / Objectives

The objectives of the Burgas case study are:

• To follow the land-sea interactions with a special focus on biodiversity;

• To identify the impact of land infrastructure on wetlands and maritime space;

• To find out what are the interactions, conflicts and impacts between uses, sectors and interests both terrestrial and marine;

• To identify key stakeholders and to involve them in the process of identifying current and future trends, sector priorities and interests;

• To develop and visualise different agenda options, recommendations and solutions for identified case area issues.

Method

The approach applied for carrying out the case study follows and is compliant with Directive 2014/89/EU on maritime spatial planning, existing international guidelines, e.g. UNESCO Marine Spatial Planning: a step-by-step approach toward ecosystem-based management (2009), and is inspired by best practice results and reports from the BaltSeaPlan Project (www.baltseaplan.eu), MASPNOSE Project (www.wageningenur.nl/en/show/Maspnose-Maritime-spatial-planning-in-the-No...), Project on Coastal and Maritime Spatial Planning in Pärnu Bay Area in Estonia and Coastal Municipalities of Latvia (https://coastalandmaritime.wordpress.com/).

Main Outputs / Results

Following the analysis of the natural environment and environmental conditions, the urban development, existing economic activities, potential interests and land/sea uses along the coast and in the marine area of Burgas, a matrix showing the conflicts and synergies between different land/sea uses was produced. The latter is shown in the figure below:

Figure 1. Land-sea interactions matrix for Burgas study area

Source: Stancheva, M., Stanchev, H., Krastev, A., Palazov, A. & Yankova, M. 2017. Case Study 3 Burgas: Land-Sea Interactions. Report on WP1, Activity 1.1, Component 1.1.2, Cross border maritime spatial planning in the Black sea – Romania and Bulgaria (MARSPLAN–BS) Project. June, 2017, 126 p.,ISBN: 978-954-9490-49-7

Interactions without conflicts and compatibilities between land and sea activities and with environment are coded in green. Weak conflicts between land and sea uses and with coastal and marine environment are indicated with yellow colour. Interactions where conflicts in the land-sea uses and environment are most likely to occur are coloured in red. Empty boxes denote to no interactions identified.

Following the analysis, 16 different coastal land uses and 22 sea uses were identified in Burgas study area. Land-sea interactions without whatsoever conflict are 44; weak conflicts are possible to arise in 100 combinations; 16 conflicts were identified; and 192 no interactions between land and sea uses were indicated.

In order to visualize the results of the assessment, a map of the main conflicts of use and of the environment was produced, which is based on the analysis of human uses in the maritime space of Burgas study area. Major part of the area is recorded as spatially overlapped multiple uses ‑ mostly for military trainings, fishing, diving, shipping and navigation, yachting and engine boats.

Transferability

The practice, in the sense of the methodological framework for development of similar case study, is fully transferable and can be applied to a multitude of context. The practice has already been transferred from different contexts.

Responsible Entity

Institute of Oceanology - Bulgarian Academy of Sciences

40, First May Street, Varna 9000, Bulgaria

Costs / Funding Source

European Maritime and Fisheries Fund, DG MARE, European Commission, Grant Agreement: EASME/EMFF/2014/1.2.1.5/2/SI2.707672 MSP LOT 1 /BLACK SEA/MARSPLAN-BS

Contact person

Dr. Margarita STANCHEVA

Institute of Oceanology - Bulgarian Academy of Sciences

40, First May Street, Varna 9000, Bulgaria

Telephone: + 359 52 370 486

E-mail: stancheva@io-bas.bg

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