Acheloos, Greece, interbasin water transfer, integrated water resources management, socioeconomic


Interbasin water transfer is a primary instrument of water resources management directly related with the integrated development of the economy, society and environment. Here we assess the project of the interbasin water transfer from the river Acheloos to the river Pinios basin which has intrigued the Greek society, the politicians and scientists for decades. The set of criteria we apply originate from a previous study reviewing four interbasin water transfers and assessing whether an interbasin water transfer is compatible with the concept of integrated water resources management. In this respect, we assess which of the principles of the integrated water resources management the Acheloos to Pinios interbasin water transfer project does or does not satisfy. While the project meets the criteria of real surplus and deficit, of sustainability and of sound science, i.e., the criteria mostly related to the engineering part, it fails to meet the criteria of good governance and balancing of existing rights with needs, i.e., the criteria associated with social aspects of the project. The non-fulfilment of the latter criteria is the consequence of chronic diseases of the Greek society, which become obvious in the case study.