Background

The main purpose of the Project was to prepare geographic information for the most environmentally sensitive areas of Romania. This is needed for environmental monitoring and reporting, dealing with effects of climate change, integrated planning and for implementation of the EU Directive on harmonization and exchange of geographic information.

In so doing, a modern and efficient national mapping authority for Romania would be established, with capacities to extend the production of geographic data to other parts of the country and to fulfil the obligations of Romania to prepare geographic information in compliance with EU regulations. New maps for significant parts of the country would be produced, including environmentally sensitive areas and flood risk areas. The project would improve public access to geographic data via Internet, inter alia, to support the implementation of development and environmental policies. 

Activities

The project consisted of four components:

  1. Production of a detailed terrain model, new maps and orthophotos for approximately 50,000 km2 in 6 counties: Bihor, Arad, Hunedoara, Alba, Mures, Harghita including high risk flood zone (the area from the border with the Republic of Hungary in Arad and Bihor).
  2. Establishment of a geographic names database.
  3. Procurement of equipment for safe storage and effective distribution of geographic data.
  4. An information campaign and activities to strengthen the bilateral cooperation between Norway and Romania.

Justification

Up to date maps are indispensable for planning and development of infrastructure, for construction, for land use planning, as well as for environmental protection and monitoring, and thus vital instruments for aligning Romania with the better placed countries in the European Economic Area. Geographic information in digital form is increasingly used for dealing with issues related to effects of climate change, including flooding and other natural hazards, as well as for effects of pollution to water and air. 

The importance of geographic information is underlined by several EU Directives requesting that data are reflected on digital maps for policies and actions domestically and for exchange and sharing of data across national borders. The latter is especially highlighted in the EU Inspire Directive on harmonizing, sharing and exchange of geographic information. 

Geographic data produced in the project allows Romania to better undertake its environmental planning, monitoring and reporting obligations to the European Commission.

The detailed terrain model produced by airborne scanning will enhance the capacity to deal with flooding in the Danube river and other rivers in the project area, e.g. by automatically identifying areas that will be affected following rise of water levels.

The terrain model will be a permanent resource for rapid and cheaper production of subsequent up to date maps as this is becoming needed. A good terrain model facilitates better accuracy of maps and orthophotos, thus also improving the ongoing reconstruction of parcel boundaries. 

The database of geographic names will facilitate access to information using names as search criteria in Internet based services. 

Finally, the project will ensure that NACLR has in place the IT equipment needed for storage and efficient access to geographic data, as well as for safe backup of the data at a different location. 

Capacity building targeted the preparation of standards, specifications for procurement of data production and related quality control as well as for distribution of data in compliance with best European practices and the Inspire Directive.  

News

The project ended in April 2017. Although we had excellent cooperation on the project, progress in aerial photography, production of maps, laser scanning and production of terrain model was greatly delayed.

NACRL has been granted funding in the next phase of the EEA Grants scheme, and from 2017-2021 plans to complete the unfinished/ delayed activities from LAKI II in addition to laser scanning for the rest of Romania in this next project period, through LAKI III.