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Moldova is one of the smaller countries of the Danube River Basin, but the Danube touches the southern point of Moldova for about 340 meters. Pituresque Moldova holds over 12,500km² of the Danube River Basin, including 8,300km² of the Prut River Sub-Basin, 3300km² of the Yalpugh River Sub-Basin and 900km² of the Cahul River Sub-Basin.

Moldova’s landscape, climate and water flow

The Danube River Basin in Moldova is hilly with an average elevation of 200 metres – the highest point is 429 metres and the lowest 70 metres. The country receives 500mm of precipitation per year in the northern and central parts, and 370mm per year in the south. Of this, 70% occurs during the spring and summer and 30% in the winter.

Did you know?
Agriculture dominates in Moldova’s part of the Danube River Basin – 80% of the total area used for agriculture.

Natural highlights include:
Lakes Manta and Beleu are two of the largest natural lakes in Moldova. Lake Manta has an area of 1,100ha, and Lake Beleu is slightly smaller at 1,000ha. All lakes are located in the lower Prut Basin at a distance of 20-40km from the confluence with the Danube River.

Human Uses

Approximately one million people live in the Danube River Basin within Moldova, and settlements occupy around 8% of the territory. Some 70% of the population live in rural areas and 30% in urban areas. Approximately 30% of the population are connected to drinking water and sewage systems, however in rural areas only 10% are connected to drinking water supplies and 2-3% to sewage systems. More than 95% of all drinking water for rural and urban settlements comes from groundwater sources. The average water consumption is 50 litres per person per day. The total water consumption for rural areas is 50,000 m3/day.

Around 90% of the river banks are dammed – at an average height of two metres. The dams are normally sufficient, and since the construction of the Costesti-Stinca reservoir no significant floods have been recorded in the region.

Energy production in the region is very low, with only one hydropower station in this part of the Danube River Basin. The Costesti-Stinca hydroelectric plant provides around 20,000 megawatts per year.


The average volume of discharged waters to the country’s rivers is 9,220 million m³ per year. Pollution types associated with these discharges are nutrients and biochemical oxygen demand (BOD). According to estimates, point sources make up between 8-10% of all nutrient loads – 1,600 tonnes of nitrogen and 100 of phosphorus. Estimates show approximately 17,500 tonnes of nitrogen and 1,600 tonnes of phosphorus. The main substances, according to national statistics, are N, P and BOD. A deposit of nearly 5,000 tonnes of pesticides is located in the lower Prut Basin. Approximately 70% of banned pesticides are DDT and HCH.

For detailed information on the above, download the fact sheet below.


The information contained in the ICPDR website is intended to enhance public access to information about the ICPDR and the Danube River. The information is correct to the best of the knowledge of the ICPDR Secretariat. If errors are brought to our attention we will try to correct them.
The ICPDR, expert group members, nor other parties involved in preparation of information contained on this website cannot, however, be held responsible for the correctness and validity of the data and information provided, nor accept responsibility or liability for damages or losses arising directly or indirectly from the use of the information conveyed therein.
Only those documents clearly marked ICPDR documents reflect the position of the ICPDR.
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When using the information and material provided on this website, credit should be given to the ICPDR.

Last Edit: 2007-05-07