Ecological and sustainable agriculture in accordance to a contemporary water management

Safeguarding the long-term quality of bodies of groundwater on both sides of the Mur (or Mura) River, which on the one hand are subject to intensive agricultural use and on the other hand a reservoir for drinking water supply, is a common challenge. The overall objective is to establish cross-border cooperation in order to sustainably safeguard and improve the quality of the lower Mur River and the connected bodies of groundwater to achieve a long-lasting good qualitative state of groundwater. This will also positively affect the state of the surface water of a 67km long cross border section of the Mur River.

The main outputs are based on an integrated approach in the wider parts of the project area and contribute on different levels (measurement, modelling, avoidance strategy) to reducing the discharge of nutrients from agricultural management and therefore to improving the water quality in the project region.

The cross-border approach creates the conditions necessary to ensure that the measures taken to safeguard and/or improve the quality of groundwater, e.g. changing land use, will not be neutralised by infiltrated harmful substances from the Mur River of the body of groundwater on the other side of the Mur. Therefore, the development of joint strategies for the co-existence of agriculture and groundwater protection is of the utmost importance. This will also benefit all citizens in the project region, as the environmental situation is going to improve sustainably.

The methods used per se are not new: nevertheless, the combined use of measurements of detailed processes, their regional modelling and monitoring on both sides of the Mur River is an innovative approach.

Priority axis 2

Investment Priority 6f
SO 1: Innovation in sustainable management and utilization of water resources

Project duration

1 July 2016 – 30 June 2019

Contracted ERDF

1.522.484,35 EUR

Project Partners

Amt der Steiermärkischen Landesregierung, Abteilung 14, Wasserwirtschaft, Ressourcen und Nachhaltigkeit (Lead Partner)

Nacionalni laboratorij za zdravje, okolje in hrano

Institut za ekološki inženiring


Kmetijsko gozdarska zbornica Slovenije. Kmetijsko gozdarski zavod Murska Sobota

Regionalmanagement Südoststeiermark, Steirisches Vulkanland

Regionalmanagement Südweststeiermark GmbH