APPENDIX 1. Some key points of the Water Framework Directive (WFD).

“The WFD, as its name implies, establishes a framework providing for a common approach, and common objectives, principles, definitions, and basic measures” (WWF 2001:8). The main points of the framework can be developed around some key implementation tasks (Fig. 1):
  • Each MS must set up ‘River Basin Districts’ (RBD), including river basins and other waters (coastal, ground, wetlands), and designate their ‘Competent authorities’. RBD is the level to conceive, implement and control water management;
  • Once ‘water bodies’ are characterized, key management issues must be identified and agreed at RBD level in order to reach environmental objectives defined through the notion of ‘good water statuses’. This implies current water status assessment in regard of reference conditions or quality standards and economic analysis of water use. Active involvement of the public in building up management plans has to be encouraged;
  • Programmes of measures and RBD management plans must include basic measures and supplementary ones if good status is to be achieved. Using economic analysis, the most cost effective combination of measures should be chosen to achieve good status. Water pricing policies must be developed applying various principles like cost recovery from primary water uses, including environmental costs;
  • Monitoring networks of surface and ground-waters must be put in place to establish a coherent and comprehensive overview of water statuses. It must help assess and revise management plans, report progress to the EU and allow inter-calibration of RBDs’ water statuses at EU level.