Project Details

Title: Sustainable Hydro Assessment and Groundwater Recharge Projects
Priority: 2: Environment and risk prevention
Theme: Water management

Type of intervention

Type of intervention: 1: Regional Initiative Project
Mini-programme: No
Duration: 1st Jan 2010 - 31st Dec 2012


Total budget: €1,832,243.61
ERDF contribution: €1,428,908.79

Lead partner

Elisabethstraße 18/2
8010, Graz

  • Click for contact details
    • Contact Person: Erwin KUBISTA
      Phone: +43 316 876 1118
      Fax: +43 316 876 1321

Project summary

Over 95% of the world’s freshwater, excluding glaciers and ice caps, is found underground. Groundwater provides the steady, base flow of rivers and wetlands, maintaining this flow and keeping it free from pollution is vital for surface water ecosystems. Groundwater is also a crucial source of drinking water, supplying the water systems for three out of four EU citizens. In some countries groundwater extraction provides almost 100% of drinking water, therefore its protection is vital. Furthermore also European economies tap groundwater for industrial cooling and for agricultural irrigation.


In this context, SHARP focuses on the exchange of innovative technologies to protect groundwater resources for future generations by considering the climate change and the different geological and geographical conditions of regions involved.


Partners will exchange practical know-how and also determine know-how demands concerning SHARP’s key contents: general groundwater management tools,

artificial groundwater recharge technologies, groundwater monitoring systems, strategic use of groundwater resources for drinking water, irrigation and industry, techniques to save water quality and quantity, drinking water safety plans, risk management tools and water balance models.


While some partners are well experienced in groundwater management and in techniques to save and improve the water quality and quantity, other partners are less experienced and in need of specific know-how for their current and future situation.


Thus partners agreed to support less experienced partners with necessary know-how by sharing the existing expertise and by processing existing know-how to be applied in different geological & geographical regions. Gained feedback and specific demands of the less experienced partners will help the more experienced ones to recheck their own implemented methods/technologies and – if necessary - to optimise or adapt them (win –win situation for all partners).

The exchange of experiences and transfer of know-how will primarily be achieved via Seminars, Study Visits and International Conferences. Furthermore SHARP will support the know-how transfer and facilitate the cooperation between project partners, decision makers and relevant stakeholders by the establishment of the SHARP VIC (Virtual Information Centre) an IT-based communication system - to ensure the permanent access to the SHARP know-how pool.


Based on innovative methods, technologies and practices and its further development in the course of the project the sensitive management and the responsible use of available groundwater resources for drinking water, irrigation or industrial use will be supported.

SHARP Outputs & results will influence the regional policy in the frame of sustainable groundwater management to save and improve the quality and quantity of groundwater reservoirs for future generations.

Project achievements

The overall objective of SHARP is to save & protect existing water resources for future generations. To achieve that goal PPs from 7 different European countries exchange and develop promising and innovative technologies in the frame of sustainable groundwater management and risk prevention of water supplies which will improve future decisions and actions at the local/regional level. This scope of SHARP supports the conservation, improvement and sustainable availability of groundwater resources – essential for human beings, animals and plants. The SHARP project deals with innovative tools, methodologies and technologies to enhance the quantity and quality of existing groundwater resources, to protect and save them for future use. In that context, all project partners share their knowledge in the area of general groundwater management and transfer their experiences. Several main actions are done within SHARP to ensure the attainment of goals: Well experienced & less experienced European

partner regions are brought together in SHARP. Their specific knowledge supports European groundwater resources management actions based on innovative technologies applied in different European regions. During the 1st transnational seminar PPs present their specific experiences and the demand for problem solving methodologies on groundwater resources management for drinking water, irrigation and industrial use. During the 2nd transnational seminar PPs collect, discuss and assess existing pilot projects, practical experiences, methods and techniques within the SHARP partnership. The 3rd, 4th and 5th transnational seminars systematically aggregates and process selected good practices & techniques as well as prepares/develops relevant innovative methods and techniques to ensure the sustainable use of groundwater reserves considering different regional and national premises. Several key contents build the core of SHARP: The exchange of experience is carried out in SHARP-Seminars, where the

partner’s staffs – experts & responsible persons – present, declare, discuss & disseminate existing experiences & define current and expected future problems/demands on groundwater resource management. A total of two Study Visits of already implemented innovative pilot-projects take place. The SHARP know-how pool is presented by the project partners and the achievements are published in 2 International Conferences and 2 SHARP DVDs with the highlights of the SHARP events. 17 good practices are identified, 15 are adapted & distributed through the SHARP Manual & the International Conferences. To disseminate and communicate SHARP`s results/outputs to a wider selected audience, a total of five SHARP press conferences are hold. Steering Group Meetings in order to monitor the general progress & activity and financial related performance of the operation are hold. Regarding to these key contents SHARP leads to below mentioned results: 33 staff members reached increased capacity on groundwater

management. 17 good practices were identified & 15 improvements/adaptations of existing technologies are elaborated. Direct contacts with key players, administrative decision makers at local/regional/national/European level, water suppliers, media. New projects activities resulting from SHARP are: Online monitoring & DSS, Geothermal use of groundwater, How to engage with key stakeholders, Drinking water safety plans and Development of groundwater monitoring for anthropogenic transformed areas e.g. Ground Water Management Island Chios (GR). To support the generation and expansion of SHARP know-how, all information is administered in the SHARP Knowledge Management System (KMS) published on SHARP website. Interim results on methods, examples, techniques etc. are published in specific newsletters. The printed version of the “SHARP Manual” with a print run of 1000 books was distributed by all PPs to relevant stakeholders, policy maker & is addressed to water related parties.


Institution, Town Country Region Contact details
WATERPOOL COMPETENCE NETWORK GmbH, Graz AUSTRIA Steiermark +43 316 876 1118
Region of Western Macedonia, KOZANI GREECE Dytiki Makedonia 0030 24610 53992;
Region of North Aegean, Mytilene GREECE Voreio Aigaio 0030 22510-37737 / 47370
Regional Agency for Rural Development of Friuli Venezia Giulia, Gorizia ITALY Friuli-Venezia Giulia 0039 0481 3861
Local Councils' Association, Balzan MALTA Malta 00356 21446428
Institute of Meteorology and Water Management National Research Institute Wroclaw Branch, Wroclaw POLAND Dolnoslaskie +48 71 328 41 11
International Resources & Recycling Institute, Edinburgh UNITED KINGDOM Eastern Scotland +44 131 556 2006
Saxon State Office for the Environment, Agriculture and Geology, Dresden GERMANY Dresden +49 351 8928 4215
Holding Graz Services, water supply, Graz AUSTRIA Steiermark +43 316 877 6960


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