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Monday, 04 April 2011

Europe needs an integrated water policy

We need an integrated approach, for the future of water resources in Europe, the various Union policies must be coordinated for the protection of water. This was concluded in the informal meeting of the Environment Council, on 25 March 2011, in Gödöllő, near Budapest. The Hungarian Presidency aims to facilitate the adoption of a closing document on the sustainable utilisation of water, by the Environment Council, which is due to take place in June. [...] At their working lunch, the Ministers discussed the possible role of water in other EU policies, including the difficulties of integrating water policy into other policies; and ways to reach improved mobilisation of financial resources available in multi-annual budgets, for the benefit of water management. In addition to the 27 Member States, eight non-EU states (five candidate countries, two members of the European Economic Area and Switzerland), and representatives of invited European institutions and non-governmental organisations of environment protection, also attended the meeting. Preparations by the Commission to issue in accordance with the Water Framework Directive a comprehensive policy report under the title “Blueprint to Safeguard Europe’s Water Resources”, in 2012 lent currency to the debate of the Ministers. The opinion that environmental policy must receive a political impetus dominated the meeting. The Ministers formulated a message for the Commission, underlining the need for an integrated water management policy that sets medium and long-term objectives, and is capable of meeting new challenges such as climate change.

Source: EU Presidency