European Parliament sees sense on water reuse
Brussels, 12 February 2019: The European Parliament voted to make water reuse a workable reality.
The Regulation on Minimum Requirements for Water Reuse sets out the quality of water destined to be reused in agricultural irrigation and the requirements that need to be put in place for safe water reuse ensuring human health and environmental protection.
“Common sense has prevailed. We are relieved that the proposed amendment to hold reclamation facility operators liable for any possible contamination was rejected. If this had passed, the entire water reuse practice would have been jeopardised, as no operator would have risked producing reclaimed water under the threat of having to compensate for the pollution they are not responsible for.” said Bertrand Vallet, Policy Officer, EurEau.
Last month, the ENVI Committee introduced an amendment that placed the liability for any type of soil or agricultural product contamination solely at the feet of the water reclamation facility operator. Following today’s Plenary vote, the amended text will ensure that operators are responsible for the quality of reclaimed water until the point of delivery and only liable if the water does not comply with standards.
We are pleased that MEPs corrected this anomaly but we see room – still – for improvement. We are in favour of the water reuse project approach where the initiator of the project - the one who needs the water - takes responsibility for it, instead of the reclamation facility operator. The Parliament also omits the permit for the end user.
We will work with the Council to incorporate these in the regulation” Vallet continued.