The strategy BLUEPRINT adopted

Last 15 th November the European Commission launched a Blueprint to Safeguard Europe's Water Resources, a strategy for ensuring that enough good quality water is available to meet the needs of people, the economy and the environment.

Water quantity is of equal concern with water scarcity spreading in Europe and extreme events, like floods, increasing in many Member States. New efforts are required in order to deal with old and emerging challenges, including water pollution, water abstraction for agriculture and energy production, land use and the impacts of climate change. Strengthened measures are needed to help the EU protect its water resources and become more resource efficient.

To achieve the already existing Water Framework Directive objective of good water status by 2015, the Water Blueprint sets out a three-tier strategic approach:

  • Improving implementation of current EU water policy by making full use of the opportunities provided by the current laws. For example, increasing the take-up of natural water retention measures such as the restoration of wetlands and floodplains or improving implementation of the "polluter pays" principle through metering, water-pricing and better economic analysis.
  • Increasing the integration of water policy objectives into other relevant policy areas such as agriculture, fisheries, renewable energy, transport and the Cohesion and Structural Funds.
  • Filling the gaps of the current framework, particularly in relation to the tools needed to increase water efficiency. In this regard, the Water Blueprint envisages water accounts and water efficiency targets to be set by Member States and the development of EU standards for water re-use.

The Water Blueprint highlights that preserving water is not only about environmental protection, health and well-being. It is also about economic growth and prosperity. It is a way of ensuring that the EU water industry develops fully its growth potential and that all the economic sectors that depend on availability of water of a certain quality can prosper thereby creating growth and job opportunities. The Blueprint is supported by the Innovation Partnership on Water launched in May 2012 and closely related to the EU's 2020 Strategy and, in particular, to the 2011 Resource Efficiency Roadmap, of which the Blueprint is the water milestone.

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published on 2012/11/21 13:42:09 GMT+1 last modified 2018-07-16T13:37:18+01:00