The Ohio River Valley Water Sanitation Commission (ORSANCO), in cooperation with the United States EPA, is completing it role in assisting the Baltic Countries of Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Kaliningrad Oblast, Russia with watershed management capacity building demonstration projects under the Great Lakes/Baltic Sea Partnership Program. The Countries of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania view the skills gained through this program as important to their objective of complying with the European Union’s Water Framework Directive and thus facilitating accession into the European Union. The program also addressed Kaliningrad’s desire to work cooperatively with their neighboring countries concerning shared waters. Three watershed demonstration projects were designed and implemented, two of which involved joint country efforts: Parnu River (Estonia) modeling for nutrients and bacteria survey; river basin assessment and management planning for the Lielupe Basin (Latvia and Lithuania); and data base development and cooperative water quality survey and analysis for the Sesupe River (Lithuania and Kaliningrad). The benefits of the projects include enhancing the country’s technical skills and the forging of relationships, without which achieving effective watershed management will be difficult to achieve.

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