site.btaBubbling Reefs Discovered in Black Sea for First Time under NATURA 2000-Related Project
Bubbling reefs have been discovered in the Black Sea for the first time by a team of scientists working on a project titled "NATURA 2000 in the Black Sea". The "fizzy" formations are located in the areas of Zelenka, Aladzha Banka and Ropotamo Beach. The research project is funded under Operational Programme Environment and implemented by the Pontus Indago Consortium.
Boris Karakushev, who heads the consortium, explained to BTA that the existence of bubbling reefs in the Black Sea was suspected but remained unproven for some time.
"NATURA 2000 in the Black Sea" is an important project for mapping the habitats in the Bulgarian part of the sea in view of assessing the sufficiency of the NATURA 2000 network and whether the designated zones correspond to the actual distribution of available species, Karakushev said. Overall, he noted, the implementation of the marine segment of NATURA 2000 has been delayed in all EU member states.
Assessing the distribution of species will help determine those of them which have conservation significance and will suggest where Bulgaria should focus its habitat maintenance and restoration efforts.
Deputy Environment and Water Minister Petar Dimitrov said the project has high relevance to environmental protection policies and is directly related to the fulfilment of Bulgaria's obligations arising from the EU Habitats Directive, which has been transposed into the country's Biological Diversity Act.
The project is supported financially by the European Regional Development Fund 2014-2020.