EurEau newsletter - January 2023
On 18 January, Oliver Loebel, EurEau Secretary General, spoke at a DVGW technical meeting on drinking water-related topics (online).
On 19 January, Oliver presented the view of water operators at the ESPP workshop on nitrogen recovery (Brussels).
On 26 January, Raphael Heredero, EurEau’s Policy Advisor, spoke at the European Parliament Intergroup on Climate Change, Biodiversity and Sustainable development on bio-based, biodegradable and compostable plastics in Brussels.
On 31 January, Oliver was in Rotterdam to deliver our input at the European Commission EU Blue Economy Observatory Refreshing H20 Policy workshop on the social and economic dimension of water.
UWWTD: European Parliament appoints Rapporteur
The European Parliament appointed Nils Torvalds (Finland, Renew) as Rapporteur, as well as Marek Balt (Poland, S&D), Deirdre Clune (Ireland, EPP) and Margrete Auken (Denmark, Greens) as Shadow Rapporteurs.
In related news, we are co-organising together with the EBCD, a meeting of the European Parliament Intergroup on Climate Change, Biodiversity and Sustainable Development, to be held in February (date to be confirmed).
Water and agriculture
Sustainable Use of Pesticides Regulation: protecting water resources
Member States and the European Parliament are still far from presenting an opinion on this draft Regulation. We continue our work to promote the protection of drinking water resources from pesticide contamination and achieve policy coherence with the Water Framework Directive and the Drinking Water Directive.
On the request of the Council, the Commission will prepare an additional impact assessment addressing in particular risks to food security.
As to the Parliament, the report of the rapporteur is expected for the beginning of February. The deadlines for amendments and the opinion of the AGRI committee are still not set.
You can read our position here.
Water and the environment
Chemicals: general PFAS restriction and CLP and REACH regulations
Five European countries submitted a general PFAS restriction proposal to the ECHA on 13 January. Read more here.
After the Commission published the Delegated Act amending CLP annexes on 20 September, to introduce the new hazard classes, the Commission published its proposal for a Regulation amending CLP on 20 December. More here. We now need solid action such as the extension of the generic approach to risk management to all these new hazard classes.
We signed a joint letter asking the Commission to avoid further delays on the revision of REACH. The Commission has delayed the publication until end of the year.
IED: amendments published
The amendments to the draft revision of the IED tabled by MEPs in the ENVI committee were published in early January.
Many of the proposed amendments support our views, including requirements for industries to inform waste water treatment plant (UWWTP) operators of discharges into urban sewers, consult drinking water and waste water operators before granting an industrial permit and prohibit the discharge of substances not explicitly allowed by the permit.
We trust that the Parliament will vote to maintain a high level of ambition in protecting water resources from pollution and over-use.
The European Parliament’s ENVI committee vote on this file is scheduled for 27 April 2023. The Swedish presidency aims for the Council to adopt its General Approach on the text before July.
Water as an essential service
Critical Raw Material Act: Commission proposal expected in March 2023
The Commission proposal for a Critical Raw Materials Act is expected to be published on 8 March 2023.
EurEau recommends an extension of the scope to all products used by critical entities like water services to ensure continuity of services.
Our reaction to the call for evidence is here and to the public consultation is here.
This initiative aims to reinforce EU monitoring capacities and strengthen both the EU value chain – through the identification of mineral resources and raw materials projects in the EU's strategic interest.
NIS2 and CERD: published
Both the High Common Level of Cybersecurity Across the Union Directive (NIS2) and the Critical Entities Resilience Directive (CERD) were published in December and should be fully implemented by October 2024.
Drinking water and waste water operators are explicitly included in the definition of critical entities. Depending on the risks, the new rules may also be applicable to very small operators.
To the NIS2 Directive here and the CERD here.
Innovation Sharing Platform news
The EurEau Innovation Sharing Platform is open to EurEau members and their member associations.
Horizon Europe: Green Deal Funding Alert - Cluster 5 and 6
Various calls for proposals are open under Horizon Europe.
Cluster 5 Climate, Energy and Mobility work programme: includes almost 200 calls for proposals on specific topics related to climate science, cross-sectoral solutions for the climate transition, energy supply, energy use, transport, smart mobility services. You can find a summary here of the most pertinent calls which provide funding for projects implementing the Green Deal at local and regional levels.
Cluster 6 Food, Bioeconomy, Natural Resource, Agriculture and Environment Work Programme: includes around 170 calls for proposals covering biodiversity and ecosystem services; food systems; circular Economy and bioeconomy; clean environment and zero pollution; land, ocean and water for climate action; resilient, inclusive, healthy and green rural, coastal and urban communities. You can find the summary of the most pertinent calls for this Cluster here.
Horizon Europe Missions calls: 30 calls for proposals linked to the areas of the 5 Horizon Europe Missions: Adaptation to Climate Change, Cancer, Restore our Oceans and Waters by 2030, 100 Climate-Neutral and Smart Cities. The calls are open to all local and regional authorities; not limited to entities signatories of the Missions' Charters. The most relevant for the water sector is: to protect critical infrastructure from climate change, mainstreaming nature based solutions. Find more information here.
In related news, the European Commission is currently running a public consultation until 23 February on the past H2020 and Horizon Europe programmes and the future 2025-2027 work programme.
World Water Week
World Water Week 2023 will take place from 20-24 August in Stockholm and focus on innovation.
Applications are now open for hosting sessionss that explore how water can be a powerful tool to address the water crisis, global warming, biodiversity loss, poverty, and many other water-related challenges. The organisers invite you to submit a proposal before 7 March, 2023.
23-25 May 2023 - international conference on cyber security taking place in Romania; more details when we have them.
5-7 September 2023 – NORDIWA call for abstracts for the conference to take place in Gothenburg, Sweden. More on LinkedIn…
4-6 October 2023 - Smart Cities, Poland; More information soon.