November 11 2021
Ensure an adequate supply of water at affordable tariffs. This is the task of the regulatory authorities of the various EU countries.
WAREG, the European Association of Water Service Regulators, has since yesterday an office in Brussels to closely follow the evolution of EU Directives and the main packages concerning the environment (Green Deal, Zero Pollution Action Plan).
The core of European regulators’ actions, at this time, is “the REGULATION (EU) 2020/741 OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL on minimum requirements for water reuse”, and in particular the need to define the criteria for calculating the costs of the activities that are functional to the reuse of outlet water from purification plants and to identify the entities that will have to take charge of it: these best practices seem to be absent in the new regulation.
Jointly to environmental sustainability and innovation, such issues will be addressed by the 2nd European Forum on the regulation of water services (EFWRS) promoted by WAREG, on 1st December 2021.
However, it is essential that WAREG as a European association continues to bring attention to the full implementation of Article 9 of the Water Framework Directive (the principle of full cost recovery) that will facilitate the achievement of many objectives, such as the constant growth of investments that are vital to improve water services quality and to overcome EU infringement procedures to Member States.
In the new institutional office in Brussels, hosted by BRUGEL (The Brussels Regulatory Commission for Energy and Water, in Avenue des Arts 46), the 23rd WAREG General Assembly also addressed the possible impacts of the recent surge in energy prices on the water sector, and committed to study adequate measures to minimize economic shocks on operators, hence limiting potentially bad repercussions on consumers’ bills.
Similar considerations – remarked WAREG President Andrea Guerrini – will be presented in the 2nd European Forum on the regulation of water services, which can be followed for free online, by registering on https://www.wareg.org/efrws/.