About the Ecology of the Navigation Link the Black Sea – the North Sea


Author: Ioan Cuncev, Ph.D. Institute of Research and Technological Projecting in Tourism, Bucharest (Romania), http://cuncev.wordpress.com/

Editor’s Note: In the treasury of valuable contributions from participants at international conferences “Danube – River of Cooperation” there are many that still remain current, even after two decades. Such is this presentation given at the second conference in 1990. For thinking today through the issues of the first and second pillars of the EU Strategy for Danube Region, we could get knowledge rereading the following article, first published in the Proceedings of the Second Conference.

The ecologic crisis nowadays, as a result of technological development of the human society, will be also present on the future waterway: the Black Sea-the North Sea, which together with its influence area, has all the chances to justify its quality as an European transport corridor.

In the neighbourhood of the Black Sea – North Sea navigation waterway a very important industrial activity has developed, of high influence on national gross product (NGP) or internal gross product (IGP) of the respective countries, concerning generating wastes and noxes which could reach, in one way or another, the river and canals, thus making their quality worse.

The risk of nature degradation is included in the polluting factors which result from the main categories of the social activity: material production (organic and inorganic wastes, chemical ashes, scrap iron, damaged grounds, deforestation etc.), energy production/consumption (carbon dioxide, carbon oxide, sulphur dioxide, ashes, radio-active wastes etc.), consumption (dust, worn waters, garbage etc.).

In order to express the wastes quantity due to the economical activity in a certain national economy or in a certain economic-social area, the input-output model can be used when considering “m” branches of goods production and (n-m) wastes generated by these branches (n m).

For these “m” branches we are defining Y1 – final demand, X1 – total production, A11 * X1 – necessary production for intermediary demand. Similarly, for the (n-m) wastes there are X2 and Y2 and A12, A21, A22 matrices, finally resulting an input-output model of “n” branches, thus also including the ecologic factor. So knowing the products final demand Y1, it can be determined the wastes quantity X2 resulted from the economical activity necessary to meet this demand. Thus the total amount of wastes thrown-out in the environmental area would be:


It is understood that similary the results of pollution preventing and controlling in context of a certain economic-social complex can be determined.

The pollution risks are even higher when achieving or developing important industrial units in the influence area of navigation link in its corridor. The phenomenon is stronger when these developments or modernizations are very fast ones and when the priority system leaves back the  measures preventing environmental pollution. In the future it would be better to consider the ecologic barrier imposed by the necessary time for achieving the measures of environment protecting and preventing pollution, as a limit of changing speed, of economical increase. Even in these cases arises the problem of the gap among the moments of events occurrence, their reception and the achievement of correcting human actions – all these being expressed in a suggestive way by the relativistic conception (Cuncev, 1984) or of another type (Florescu).

The achievement of a navigation canal, the shipping improvement of a waterway, as well as the obtaining or modernizing some railways or motorways near the navigation link corridor Black Sea – North Sea, should be carefully integrated in the environmental area for not disturbing the ecologic balance. The new communication ways by themselves could represent solutions for environment protection. For example, the Danube – the Black Sea Canal has an important contribution to decreasing the Danube Delta pollution risks, by taking over some river traffic flows, by stimulating the irrigated agricultural areas in the Dobrogea etc.

Even when man works for the sake of helping the nature, he can easily affect the environment if his steps, otherwise made with good intentions, are not carefully studied previously. For instance, if the environment enrichment by afforestation is made only by decorative criteria, that could lead to the preponderance only of some tree species, meaning disequilibrium by removing the necessary plants for some other animals feeding. Thus, it results that landscape modelling, monotony avoiding as well as its improvement should be made on the basis of an ecological project made by a multidisciplinary team including biologists, hydro-technicians, silviculterers, landscapers, architects, constructors etc. – as well as public opinion representatives. Much more, there are also opinions by which every technical-scientific solution should bear four marks: technical, economical, ecological and medical ones.

The ecological project should be an integrated part of the general project of waterway fittings, as well as canal, railway or motorway building, or of modernizing some industrial units located in the corridor area.

In the ecologic project there are going to be provisioned not only optimum technical solutions for the preserving and developing ecology in that area, but also measures and techniques of preventing and controlling environmental pollution. There are not to be neglected the activities and improvements necessary for the development of tourism, nautical and in the sphere of open sports, leisure, all these leading to the improvement of life quality.

It is necessary to modernize the forecasting and exploitation technology of the ballast from the river bed, of dredging for shipping ways maintenance, taking into account their future influence upon river bed changing, banks erosion, vegetation destruction as well as air pollution due to stone and sand deposits made on land surroundings.

The navigation link, the Black Sea – the North Sea will lead to the location of new industrial units in its influence area. Among these, not only the steel plants, the chemical and petrochemical ones, but also the materials-building industry units should represent important sources of environmental pollution if proper measures and preventing techniques are not provided.

The intense economical and transport activity specifically to the influence area of the navigation link: the North Sea – the Black Sea includes also the risk of damages within industrial units and transport means, handling and goods storage. We mustn’t forget that usually on this navigation link there are running waters which are increasing the further impacts of such damages.

If there are not undertaken energetic actions of preventing/controlling pollution, of environment preserving and its recovering, then the “ecologic condition – economic increase” system risks to move on cyclic trajectories, around the equilibrium point, routes on which are present strong conflicts of the type “economic increase – nature degradation”, “economic decrease-nature degradation” a.s.o. In reality the interdependence between x1 – ecologic organizing level (x1=0, totally degraded environment; x1=1, ecologic equilibrium) and x2 – economical increase rate, can be well described by the system (Radulescu):

x1 = (A*(-x1) - B*x2).x1
x2 = (C*x1 - D - n*x2)*x2

whose equilibrium point (x1/x1=0, x2/x2=0) becomes:

X01 = 1 - B (C-D) / (BC + nA)
X02 = A (c-D) / (BC + nA)

The first equation of the model shows how the economical increase leads to the environment degradation if sufficient money is not spent with actions for maintaining its quality and the second equation shows how the economic increase is determined by its turn of the environment quality. With a view to the system taking out from the cyclical trajectories around the equilibrium point, it is necessary to consciously intervene with preventing the environment degradation, expressed here
by “m” costs being in a tight interdependence x1 and x2 expressed by the potential (Popescu):

E(m,x1,x2) = a . m4 + bm2x1 - cmx2

Thus the model becomes:

x1/x1 = A (1-x1) - B . x2 + u . m
x2/x2 = cx1 - D - n . x2 - v . m
4 a m3 + 2 bm x1 - cx2 = 0

where the last equation results from the extremization of the potential E and it expresses the link between the model and the catastrophes theory. The model conclusion is that a high economic increase without ecologic conflicts is possible only when the economic increase includes non-productive investments as well as those aimed to preventing or controlling environment degradation.

The development of economic activity in the corridor area leads to energy necessary increasing that it is continuing with the building of new energetic objectives. As the fields of thermoelectric plants are suitable for river transport, that will facilitate the location of new thermo-power plants near the shipping ways or the development of the existing ones, thus increasing sulphur dioxide emanation in the atmosphere. In this case a major step of limiting the environmental pollution is the promotion of production technologies with lower energy consumption which should decrease the increase rate of energy demand.

And that is besides the technical measures of limiting environmental pollution by the energy productive units. The pollution risk resulted from the energy production necessity is maximum in the area thermo-power plants located along the navigation link, but also at its maritime extremities where handling facilities and big harbour warehouses of coal, oil and liquefied gas are located.

It is very important that any intervention in the natural systems near the navigation link: the Black Sea – the North Sea should be made only after a detailed study of ecologic state of the whole transport corridor based on methods of ecologic and biologic forecasting established by cooperation of riverans. Thus, it could be achieved the pollution preventing and the concentration of national and international efforts towards the improvement of environment quality. But for this aim there are necessary methods and implemented models of describing the complex ecologic phenomena, a coherent theory of ecology of interaction among all technical, economic, political and social factors together with the natural and environmental ones. In this way there are already known opinions concerning the necessity of a new research field: the economy of natural environment protection (Constantinescu). So, absolutely necessary is a bio-social systems management theory which should take into account the natural-historical conflict between human society and the environment, as well as the movement from the purpose of nature domination towards human society integration with nature, until obtaining their symbiosis. To know and to observe the objective ecologic laws mean the main condition for achieving biosociai systems management by man himself. But all these involve, however, thorough research studies, some of them fundamental in order to discover the proper laws, this being really difficult without an international co-operation. Any intervention in the nature of the human being leads to decreasing its entropy, this being equivalent with the removing from the natural ecologic equilibrium and the maintaining of a new equilibrium point, now an artificial one, caused by social efforts consumption. That last equilibrium type is an unstable one leading even to possible leaps mutations, when changing the control parameters.

An interesting trying (Burstein) of modelling the transport inter-conditioning with the environment starts from the incidence matrix of different transport modes: – (road, railway, river etc.) with the ecologic factors – (noxes, water pollutions, noises, soil degradation etc.). So a relation is defined represented on a simplicial complex (the graph multidimensional generalization having as certain elements: nodes, sides, triangles, tetrahedrons etc.). So by matrix crossing there result the families of simplicial complexes.

For example, considering the transport modes as nodes and the ecologic factors as sides (simplexes), a family of complexes is obtained and by inversioning their function results its conjugate. As a result it rises the possibility of modelling the dynamics of this simplicial system using the simplicial-geometrical theory of polyhedral dynamics. The qualitative interpretation of binary relations on simplicial complexes is achieved by using methods of analysis and the quantitative analysis is made through pattern dynamics defined on simplicial complexes.

The polyhedral dynamics on a simplicial complex is defined by multidimensional simplicial vectorial fields which otherwise represents the model of possible interactions among transport modes from viewpoints.

The author of this study (Burstein) has developed the model in an elegant manner, introducing as well a simplicial control complex corresponding to the command relations and defining simplicial dynamic systems. There are also not to be neglected the differential-linguistic models of the evolution of ecologic factors in transports.

The ecologic managing of the navigation link: the Black Sea – the North Sea is well-known as an international cooperation activity involving the better organization of the environmental conditions, permanent state and the forecasting with the purpose previously working out the corrective and preventing steps against pollution. Only by a real co-operation there can be achieved the necessary scientific researches, the typization and obtaining the technical means of preventing/controlling pollution and other forms of environmental degradation, the working out and recommending of non-polluting industrial technologies necessary for the coastal countries, the technical conditions for river ships and railway, road, air, pipeline transport means. At the same time, ecologic criteria of location and building the industrial units within the corridor, ecologic indicators and admissible limits, anti-pollution legislation and penalties can be worked out.

The ecologic problems within society imposes finding out solutions for solving certain contradictions between the present and future economy purposes, between the each unit costs and the macro-social ones, between the limited financial availabilities and unlimited social demands, between the purpose of increasing the population real income and the social costs involving the environment protection costs (Popescu).

The solving of the included ecological problem leads to promoting certain guidelines (Constantinescu), (Cuncev, 1989): natural resources, rational use, their efficiency, recovery and development, recoverable materials, adoption of non-polluting technoiogies, achievement of equipments for preventing/controlling the pollution; recovery of useful parts of wastes; neutralization of negative effects of unrecoverable wastes; development of transport means of high ecologic performances; promotion of social and ecologic thinking and consciousness; international cooperation in the ecology fields etc.

The development of a management system by the relation of cooperation between the human being – environment involves solving of some problems related to pollution maximum limits, knowledge estimation, not at the local level but at the whole unit, ecologic stare monitoring, the optimum mechanism of working out/implementing decisions, the transfer of technology and financial resources among the cooperation participants, the assignment of duties and rights on each factor located in the area of transport corridor from the point of view of environment protection.

Romania within the United Nations takes an active part in all international cooperation activities having the same objective: bringing together all the efforts for preventing and controlling pollution, taking into consideration that the ecologic problems are inter-condioned with the problems regarding the economic development the population, the natural resources, etc.


Burstein G., Elements de modelare matematica a factorului ecologic in transporturi, lucrare de cercetare, INCERTRANS, 1986, Bucuresti.

Botnariuc N., Vadineanu A., “Tendinte in evolutia Deltei Dunarii si posiblitati dc protectie”, in Ocrotirea naturii (Stugren B.), Ed. Dacia, Cluj, 1988.

Constantinescu N.N., Economia protectiei mediului natural, Ed. Politica, 1976, Bucuresti.

Cuncev I., Process rapide in sistemul de transport, Simpozionul tehnico-stiintific, 8-9 iunie 1984, Institutul de marina Constanta.

Cuncev I., “Despre ecologia legaturii de navigatie M.Neagra-M.Nordului”, Revista transporturilor si telecomunicatiilor, nr. 11, 1989.

Florescu G., Popescu N., Trecerea la o noua calitate prin conducerea stiintifica a schimbarilor, Ed.politica.

Garcia D., “La durée de vie des biens et la dégradation de l’environment”, Economic et Sociétés, Cahiers de l’ I.S.E.A., Série F, nr. 25, Tome VII, nr. 9, 1979.

MAN, B&W, Environmental Aspects of Two-Stroke Low Speed, Crosshead, Uniflow Diesel Engines; Copenhagen.

Peterson L.W., “Interaction of Population Growth, Industrial Growth and Population Control”, Journal of the Air Pollution Control Association, no. 23, 1973.

Popescu I.A., Teorie si practica in analiza sistemelor de conducere, Ed.Scrisul romanesc, Bucurcsti, vol. 1 (1977), vol. 2 (1981).

Radulescu D., Keleman N., “Modelarea starii’ecologice”, Sesiunea stiintifica, I.C.I. Bucuresti, dec. 1978.

Simionescu C.L., Modele pentru controlul optimal la sisteme cu parametri distribuiti, Ed.tehnica, 1981, Bucuresti.


Comments are closed.