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"Hot spot" means a limited and definable local land area, stretch of surface water or specific aquifer that is subject to excessive pollution and necessitates priority attention in order to prevent or reduce the actual or potential adverse impacts on human health, ecosystems or natural resources and amenities of economic importance (Revised LBS Protocol to the Bucharest Convention, 2009).

For years, keeping the Black Sea environment healthy with all its ecosystem goods and services functioning at a time when economic recovery and further development are also being pursued has been considered to be a priority challenge for all Black Sea coastal states. Yet, most of the environmental problems in the Black Sea have not been effectively addressed.

Moreover, being of transboundary character, the Black Sea environmental problems cannot be efficiently managed by individual states. Recognising the need for cooperation, harmonisation of approaches to environmental protection management and transparency, the partners of the HBS Project deal with one of the most sensitive issues in the Black Sea region – Hot Spots.

The successful implementation of the HBS Project, through the strong partnership of highly professional organizations from five Black Sea coastal states, contributes to enhancing the regional cooperation in environmental protection of the Black Sea, and directly adds to measures aimed at improvement of the Black Sea status in a sustainable manner.


The HBS project consists of 6 Group of Activities, they are as follow:

  • Harmonization of Hot Spots policies
  • Identification, evaluation and prioritisation of Hot Spots
  • Hot Spots Data Base in support of decision-making and investment planning
  • Increasing sector expertise
  • Dissemination of Knowledge and Best Practices, Public Awareness and Visibility
  • Management and coordination of the Action

Detail about all planned activities, deliverables (outputs) and milestones (expected results) are given in the attachment.