Last 22/03, we celebrated the International Water Day, joining the “Leaving no one behind” campaign of United Nations. Water is crucial for life. It is an essential economic resource, with a fundamental role in the climate cycle’s regulation. Thus, its protection and the guarantee of safe water for all are the main pillars of the European environmental protection. Those questions do not depend on boarders and therefore, require a multilevel action.
For this purpose, the European Union adopted a Directive on water for its protection, based on several key issues such as governance, chemical polluants, droughts, (etc.). Furthermore, it guarantees links with other European legal measures such as the maritime strategy or the law on consumable water. In 2001, the Commission launched a strategy to implement the development of this Directive and the Directive on droughts which gathers national, sectorial and institutional representatives together. In addition, the Commission provides analysis on water and other European policies and funding lines, in cooperation with the Member States. Among those, there is an analysis of operational programmes and rural development programmes of the 2014-2020 programming period in order to assess their contribution to the European water policy. In another hand, Europe faces problems of dryness and lack of water, mainly in the South, that’s why the EU Works to guarantee water of quality to all its citizens. Another European field of action is related to droughts’ management. Member States are required to provide a preliminar assessement of droughts’ risks to adopt prevention’s measures based on mapping and risks management plans. Furthermore, the European Commission launched a partnership on water innovation to support the development of innovative solutions related to challenges and market’s opportunities. This initiative brings all the sector’s representatives together to identify prioritary areas of action, potential obstacles and ways to solve this ones.
Water is one the main priority of Sudoe’s area at short and long term. Thus, the Interreg Sudoe Programme funds projects to guarantee a good water resources management and fight against its scarcity. Among them:
- Aguamod reinforces the cooperation of managers and users of water resources within Sudoe’s area through the development and application of joint methodologies. Taking into account the society’s demands and the ecological ones from rivers, they provide an analysis of the resources in low water level and scarcety periods and a platform, co-built with all the water actors, to ensure an integrated management of the water resources during those periods. The project also offers a social and economic evaluation of the water resources and an analysis on the quality of the water governance. Furthermore, they take into account several climate change’ scenarios and samples to implement in order to anticípate future water needs from a social and environmental point of view. + infos
- Innovec’Eau is a project which allows the pharmaceutical waste management of waste waters from residences for the elderly. They provide risks analysis, treatments, prototypes, sensors and methodologies for the pharmaceutical analysis. As there are thousands of drugs, the project focuses on the ones used within the Sudoe’s area, based on studies regarding toxicity and concentration. + infos
- 4KET4REUSE develops innovative technologies to eliminate emergent polluant from waste waters and to guarantee the safe use of those waters. The project provides the validation of 4 technologies to eliminate emergent polluants from purification systems and their promotion in the Sudoe’s market, breaking barriers between the research’ sector and the water sector and promoting the creation of Jobs. + infos
- Tritium controls radioactive emissions from nuclear plants. It provides the unique system in the world to measure the tritium generated by the plants in the rivers. It takes 4 days to detect this radioactive isotope in the water but thanks to Tritium, now, we can measure those levels in situ and in real time and therefore, we can guarantee safe water to the citizens. + infos
- TWIST is about water management and innovation. The project develops instruments to promote the research and innovation in the water sector, jointly with all the water actors. It launchs the first Living Labs in water sector. Among its results, TWIST provides a strategy for water management based on the sector demand and a mapping of the main key actors, methodologies to create living labs, a market place and international business schools related to the field. + infos