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    For information only - not an official document

    UNIS/OUS/136
    22 March 2012

    Re-issued as received

    Agriculture and Environment: Corporations taking action in river basin management

    VIENNA, 22 March (UN Information Service) - The role of leading companies in contributing to the conservation and protection of water and freshwater eco-systems in the Danube River Basin will be discussed at an Agricultural Forum held in Budapest on 23 March 2012.

    The forum is organized by the International Commission for the Protection of the Danube River (ICPDR), which has a lot of experience in facilitating public private partnerships through its "Business Friends of the Danube" network. Participating corporations include The Coca Cola Company and Coca Cola Hellenic, Agrium, Borealis, Agrana, General Electrics, Dreher and Cargill Hungary as well as other international businesses with a high impact on agriculture and the way water is used in the Danube River Basin.

    At the forum, participants will discuss what companies are already doing for water protection and how support for these efforts can be provided. Companies can take steps to improve their environmental management practices to reduce their impact. They can implement a wide variety of actions to demonstrate their corporate social responsibility (CSR), voluntarily assisting the ICPDR and countries of the Danube River Basin in their efforts to protect water resources and improve water quality.

    For combating agricultural pollution, the ICPDR has compiled recommendations on best agro-industrial techniques (BAT) for all relevant point discharges of agriculture. These are designed to serve as a reference for decision-makers and local environmental or agricultural authorities to control pollution and improve water quality in the Danube. Another important topic of the forum is the EU Strategy for the Danube Region and the opportunities it creates for both businesses and the environment.

    The forum will unite decision makers from governmental water management and agriculture authorities, representatives of international companies with a special interest in water use or with a great impact on water resources, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs).

    Further information and the agenda of the forum can be found at: www.icpdr.org

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    About the ICPDR

    The ICPDR (International Commission for the Protection of the Danube River) is an international organisation consisting of 14 cooperating states and the European Union. Since its establishment in 1998, it has grown into one of the largest and most active international river basin commissions in Europe. Its activities relate not only to the Danube River, but also the tributaries and ground water resources of the entire Danube River Basin. The ultimate goal of the ICPDR is to implement the Danube River Protection Convention, and EU legislation such as the Water Framework Directive and the Floods Directive. The ICPDR's mission is to promote and coordinate sustainable and equitable water management, including conservation, and improvement and rational use of waters for the benefit of the Danube River Basin countries and their people. The ICPDR pursues its mission by making recommendations for the improvement of water quality, developing mechanisms for flood and accident control, agreeing on standards for emissions and by assuring that these measures are reflected in the Contracting Parties' national legislations and are applied in their policies.

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    For further information, please contact:

    Benedikt Mandl
    ICPDR
    Mobile: (+43-676) 84520-0220
    Email: benedikt.mandl[at]unvienna.org
    Website: www.icpdr.org