Ministry of Environment of the Slovak Republic


Adaptive cities? Institutional innovation under climate change: A global survey of 96 cities

Joint statement of the EU Water Directors of the Visegrad Group +4 (Bulgaria, Romania, Croatia, Serbia) and water management experts focused on water management challenges during the implementation of the provisions of the EU Water Framework Directive, Drinking Water Directive, Urban Waste Water Directive and Floods Directive:


All participants agreed on that the regional cooperation in the field of implementation of the Water Framework Directive (WFD) and related directives is essential and necessary in the future, taking into account the beginning of the fitness checks for these directives and the legislative works after 2019.
Based on the discussion the participants had indicated the following issues as the main points of concerns:
1. WFD Art. 4.7 and its application – participants had agreed that we should share the experiences related to the application of Art. 4.7. The Water Directors/Heads of Delegations agreed to endorse the guidance document No. 35 on the upcoming meeting of Water Directors, however indicating that this document in their understanding will have the status of a living document and expressing concerns with regards to the wording of the guidance document No. 35 on maintenance. A clarification workshop was also envisaged among the countries. Regarding the upcoming fitness check and the revision of the WFD in 2019, participants agreed that a coordinated approach should be taken related the common interests.
2. Drinking Water Directive – participants agreed that the major issue related to the revision of the directive, will be the introduction of new threshold limits for monitoring and sampling requirements for water of abstraction below 50 persons.
3. UWWTD – in the future the number of population equivalent connected to the pipeline within borders of the designated agglomeration and the max. number of inhabitants served by individual or appropriate systems should be clarified; the issue of possible overlaps between UWWTD and other directives (Industrial Emissions Directive and standards for the industrial wastewater treatment when the communal wastewater is treated together) and delineation of agglomerations also needs a further clarification;
4. Flood and Drought management - participants agreed that they should share their experiences related to the harmonisation between the WFD and the Floods Directive. Cost recovery/water price policy requirements should be clarified especially in the use of water in agriculture. Experiences should be shared.