Reducing conflict over the Danube waters: equitable utilization and sustainable development

Rhoda Margesson
1997 Natural resources forum (Print)  
This paper develops the idea that the principle of equitable utilization must be applied in concert with sustainable water use not only in the resolution of specific disputes but in the cooperative management of water resources in general. It illustrates this point with two different cases involving the use of the Danube River. The first is the conflict over the Gabcikovo Nagymaros Dam, which now rests before the International Court of Justice. The author argues that a narrow legal ruling that
more » ... ails to take into account broader issues of equitable utilization as they relate to sustainable development will not satisfactorily address the long-term questions at slake between the parties. The second involves the situation in the Danube Delta where the potential for conflict exists, but may be minimized through the convention and institutional framework developed to address the environmental degradation and pollution of the Danube River basin, which is based in part on the principle of equitable utilization and the goal of achieving more sustainable water use. The paper provides a brief overview of the geographical features of the Danube River and international water law. It then explores the principle of equitable utilization and sustainable water use in light of the two cases and discusses the implications for the. resolution and management of conflicts involving internationally shared water courses. © 1997 United Nations
doi:10.1111/j.1477-8947.1997.tb00670.x fatcat:kja44ikk6rhmfoi6jimdbuqvdq