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Water resources in croatia ( water tank– šternA – source of life). Danijela Banko, prof . The amount of water per inhabitant places the Republic of Croatia among the best endowed countries in Europe

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water resources in croatia water tank terna source of life

Water resources in croatia(water tank– šternA – sourceof life)

Danijela Banko, prof.


TheamountofwaterperinhabitantplacestheRepublicof Croatia amongthe best endowedcountriesin Europe

  • Theaveragevolumeofthecountry’s own andtransit waters is 25,160 m3/cap/year
  • The total lengthof all natural andartificialwatercoursesintheareaof Croatia is 21,000 km

TheriverDanube, thelargestandrichestinwater, flowsthroughtheeasternborderlandof Croatia over a lengthof 137.5 km.

  • Other major rivers are the Sava (562 km) andthe Drava (505 km).
  • Theriversofthe Adriatic catchmentarea are short, haverapidsandcanyons
  • There are notmanylakesin Croatia
  • Twoartificialstoragelakeswith a total volumeof 1,050 million m3havebeencreated as a partofhydropowerplants

In spite ofextensiveresearchactivity, theknowledge on theamountandtheconditionof underground water is inconclusive

  • It canbeconcludedthat Croatia is a countryrichinwater, especiallyconsideringthelowpopulationdensityandmodestdemand for industrialandagriculturalwater, which is wellbelowaverageofdevelopedcountries.
  • Relativelyhighqualityofbothsurfaceandgroundwatercancertainlybeconsidered a positive element, with most problemsoccurringduringwarmsummerperiodswhenthe natural discharge is small, thegroundwaterlevellowandwaterdemandincreaseddue to thetourismandirrigationdemands
  • Central sewer systems are constructedonlyinlarge urban andindustrialcentres. Lessthen 35% ofwastewaterin Croatia is dischargedintothesewer systems andlessthan 10% is treatedinwastewatertreatmentplants

Theclimatechangesinitiatedby global warminghavethepotential to cause major changesinhydrologicalprocessesandhencewateravailability

  • In croatia, a largeamountofwater is wasteddue to leakagesinpipes, whichleadsto a revenuelossofup to EUR 286 million (0.9% of GDP)
  • A possibledecreaseofrunoffanditsprobableredistributionduringtheyearwillcauseshortagesinwatersupplyinsummerseason

Suchshortages are alreadybeingexperienced, since Croatia is a touristcountrywithlargeagriculturalproduction.

  • Demand for waterincreasesin Croatia duringthesummerandvegetationseason (from April to September).
  • Domesticdemandincreasesduringthedrysummertouristseason.
terna water tank
  • In the regionofIstriainthetime before the modernization of the water supply network people usedwatertankscalled– Šterna
  • It’s a local, common or householdwell for collecting, storingrainwater
  • Šternawasbuiltinareasweregroundwatersuppieswerenotavailable
  • These areas are mostly limestone, permeable soils.

First public Šterna were built in the early 19th century, buried in the ground and covered with specially placed stones

  • Almost all townsinIstriahad (stillhave) at least one water supply tank in its center, which was the source of life in the community.
  • Peopleused to gatheraroundŠterna, discussing, dancing, tradefairswereorganizedaroundthem…
  • Today Šternais a reminder of the past and traditional way of life and as such should be protected as a cultural and historical heritage.

only a few decades ago Šterna ensured to theirownerssource of life and were a sign of prosperity

  • No one really knows how manyŠterna are therein Istria.
  • Nor how manyof them still collect rainwater, how many are used as drinkingwatertanks
  • Peoplemostly use it today to watertheir gardens
  • No one is obliged to control water tanks in private and in public, if the water is not used for drinking.
  • After all, public drinking water containers in Istria (almost) do not exist.

Peopleshouldavoidusingdrinkingwater for watering gardens, lawns, washingtheirterracesandthe like negligent use ofpotablewater; anduseŠternaiftheyhave it!

Finally, Šternewillbecome more andmore popular as a valuable source of high-quality natural resource, as sources of drinking water are more vulnerable!