Public and stakeholder consultation activities

The objective of the consultation activities is to complement the existing base of information that will be used in the Fitness Check of the Water Framework Directive and the Floods Directive and the Evaluation of the Urban Waste Water Treatment Directive. Among other things, the consultations will aim to gather information and views on the extent to which the Directives have been successfully implemented, the extent to which their objectives have been met, the challenges involved, and whether there have been any trade-offs in the implementation.

The scope of the consultations is to gather further evidence to substantiate the analysis of relevance, effectiveness, efficiency, coherence and EU added value as required by the Better Regulation Guidelines. A substantial amount of information is already available through the reporting processes under the Directives as well as from numerous recent and ongoing studies. However, the aim is to gather additional information and views from the general public and a wide range of other stakeholders in order to have a full picture. Therefore, it is expected that the various consultation activities will significantly help the European Commission to assess the functioning of the Directives, and the benefits and costs perceived by the public and other stakeholders. This will allow the Commission to ensure that the five different evaluation criteria are covered from different angles.

Water is essential for life, well-being, many economic activities and for the environment, thus there are many relevant stakeholders for this consultation, e.g. the competent authorities in Member States (i.e. all authorities in charge of water-related policies, including environment, agriculture, transport, energy, etc.), the water-related industry (economic and innovation sectors), as well as any interested non-professional organised entity (local or interest-oriented), and various non-governmental organisations. Last but not least, the general public, as individual citizens will also make an important contribution to this consultation.

Consultation activities

The following consultation activities are foreseen (non-exhaustive list):

  • An online public consultation was launched on 17 September 2018, covering both the Water Framework Directive and the Floods Directive. This consultation is currently in English, but it will be soon available in all EU official languages;
  • The European Water Conference on 20-21 September 2018: elements for discussion with stakeholders will be the ongoing assessment of the 2nd River Basin Management Plans and the 1st Flood Risk Management Plans, as well as progress regarding the Fitness Check of the EU Water Legislation;
  • A range of other meetings can be expected with the above-mentioned stakeholders in 2018, either organised by the Commission or at the request of stakeholders, which will generate additional inputs;

A report with a summary of all consultation activities' results will be published once all consultation activities are completed.

Consultation Strategy

Fitness Check workshops

First stakeholder workshop on methodology and preliminary findings. Brussels, 10 October 2018. Workshop Report