As part of the next long-term EU budget, the Commission has proposed Digital Europe, a programme focused on building the strategic digital capacities of the EU and on facilitating the wide deployment of digital technologies..
With a proposed budget of 7,5 billion euro, the Digital Europe programme will reinforce EU critical digital capacities by focusing on the key areas of artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, advanced computing, data infrastructure, governance and processing, and their deployment and best use for critical sectors like energy, water and environment, manufacturing, agriculture and health.
Digital Europe Programme will help unleashing the powers of digital to reach Europe’s common goal of being climate neutral in 2050 as set out in the European Green Deal. For more information, please contact Andrea Rubini.Read More
The World Economic Forum (WEF) has recently released the 16th edition of ‘The Global Risks Report 2021’ analysing the risks from societal fractures to human health, rising unemployment, widening digital divides, youth disillusionment, and geopolitical fragmentation.
Epidemics lead biggest short-term risks and this current trend could lead to future stagnation in advanced economies and lost potential in emerging and developing markets. Although water is not clearly mentioned in the list, it can be identified within the environmental risks that are leading the top positions in the chart.
–Top-risks by likelihood: Extreme Weather Event (1st place), Climate Action Failure (2nd place), Human Environmental Damage (3rd place)
–Top-risks by impact: Biodiversity Loss (4th place), Natural Resource Crises (5th place).
Extreme weather events and natural disasters are often water related. In years to come, floods and droughts are set to strike harder and more often due to climate change. The most dramatic consequence of climate change is its impacts on the water cycle, which also means more unpredictable rainfall episodes. Therefore, extreme weather events cause the major biodiversity loss and ecosystem collapse.
Water is the common denominator of these top global risks and the upcoming years will be decisive for the fight against climate change and save what is left of our biodiversity. Check the full report to know more.Read More
On Friday 15th, the Water Europe Working Group on Industrial Water efficiency and reuse practices exchanged with the European Commission on the evaluation of the Industrial Emission Directive in light of its revision. Following its contribution to the Water Europe policy-oriented position, the working group also explored the opportunities for the water sector to contribute to a water-smart industrial emission directive.
These activities are also welcomed and will support the active participation of Water Europe to the art. 13 Forum of the Industrial Emission Directive after its appointment by the European Commission to join the expert groups. Water Europe will be represented by Dominique Gatel (Veolia).
Created in March 2011, this expert group aims to “facilitate the exchange of information on Best Available Techniques with the Member States, the industry and NGOs concerned in the context of the Industrial Emissions Directive with a view for the Commission to adopt Best Available Techniques(BAT) conclusions and to publish the BAT Reference Documents (BREFs).” The EC can obtain and make publicly available the opinion of the forum on the proposed content of the BAT reference documents. The Commission shall take into account this opinion for the adoption of the BAT conclusions.Read More
The winner of the European Green Capital 2021 competition has been announced. On June 20th 2020 in Oslo, Lathi, in Finland was officially proclaimed as the winner of the 2021 EGCA competition, by a unanimous decision from the Judges.
Three cities made it to the final stage of the competition: Lahti (Finland), Lille (France) and Strasbourg (France). They each made presentations to an international jury on 20 June 2019 to outline their overall commitment to sustainable urban development, their capacity to act as a role model for other cities, and their strategy for communicating and engaging with their citizens.
Lahti is particularly strong not only in the fields of air quality, waste, green growth and eco-innovation but also in governance.
– The central theme and vision for Lahti’s 2018 city strategy is “Bold Environmental City” gathering multiple programmes and plans focused on smart, clean and circular economy, mobility, environment, energy, urban regeneration and citizen science.
– The city has historically set out an air quality plan in 1997, which has led to a major drop in emissions since. Engaging local businesses in air quality monitoring, and additional air quality regulations the city has established on its own particularly impressed the jury.-The city showcases a clear vision for green growth and eco-innovation demonstrated by the Lake Vesijärvi and innovative projects to promote the reuse and sharing of public spaces in the city.
– In Lahti, 99% of people live within 300 metres of green urban areas. It enables citizens to enjoy nature in many different ways, offering leisure activities such as skiing, fishing and wild berry and mushroom picking.
– Lahti demonstrated a high-quality waste system, with a strong and impressive selection of treatment infrastructure servicing the city, including biogas gasification, a power plant and sorting plants.
Nonetheless the European Green Capital Award pays tribute to European cities where innovative urban environmental management and initiatives have taken hold. Award winning cities lead the way in setting higher standards in sustainable urban development, listening to what their citizens want and pioneering innovative solutions to environmental challenges.Read More
The European Union and the United Kingdom have reached an agreement on trade and cooperation which is the best outcome that we can expect for our future relations with our neighbouring country. We are happy to see that this agreement includes high environmental standards and opportunities to continue research and innovation cooperation. However, despite the high environmental standards and the non-regression principle, the European Union seems to have missed an opportunity to set a new standard in its trade and cooperation agreement that fully considers the Value of Water.
In this context, Water Europe warmly supports the establishment of a smooth relationship with the UK but deplores the loss of the opportunity to demonstrate the “strong regulatory power of the European Union” and set a new standard for international business and virtual water trade.
Water Europe invites the European Institutions to tackle this challenge in their ongoing and future international negotiations to concretely contribute and strengthen the fight against climate change for a greener, circular, and fair Europe. We remain at the disposal of the European Institutions to further contribute to any debates and recommendations on the benefits and options for water-smart treaties. Read the full paper to know more.
Water Resources East, The Nature Conservancy, Norfolk County Council and Anglian Water have formed a unique and exciting strategic partnership focusing on water management across the county of Norfolk. The partnership is looking to recruit a Programme Manager to lead the creation and development of a county Sustainable Water Management Strategy and associated Water Fund through to the end of September 2022.
Norfolk is impacted by a range of water-related issues, including falling ground water levels, abstraction pressures, housing and business development, water quality and flooding, and there is a need for an overarching strategy to address these issues. With funding from Norfolk County Council and Anglian Water, the Programme Manager will oversee the development of a detailed Sustainable Water Management Plan, including the identification of opportunities and quick wins as part of Covid-19 recovery, and will coordinate the establishment of a partnership structure known as a “Water Fund” to facilitate delivery of nature-based solutions for water management in the medium and long term.
The closing date for applications will be Wednesday 27th January and interviews will be hold (via Zoom or similar) in early February. Applicants can send their CV and cover letter to firstname.lastname@example.org, marked for the attention of Kirsty Goddard-Holmes. For more info about the position click here.Read More
Water Knowledge Europe 2021 is coming back for its spring edition to fit with the new Calls for Proposals of the Horizon Europe (HEU). This time with a new striking format.
The main programme of the event will take place from 22nd to 26th March digitally and will include the two well-known modules: Water Market Europe an Water Project Europe to foster the market outreach of innovative solutions and policy developments for a Water-Smart Europe.
In addition, to master the complexity of the new HEU Work Programmes 2021-2022, Water Europe will organise several pre-event webinars on the most interesting groups of Calls for Proposals, starting from the 2nd of February. WG meetings start on the 15th of March and during the main event week we will have the three key modules and thematic workshops. That’s our way to provide you with the most updated information for the preparation of your successful project consortia.
Read the full announcement here to know more, registration will come up soon.Read More
HYDROUSA project has recently published a new paper on “Policy and legislative barriers to close water-related loops in innovative small water and wastewater systems in Europe: A critical analysis”.
The paper aims to highlight:
– Regulatory fitness check was applied to closed water loops to identify legislative and financing barriers.
– Current EU legislatives do not provide ad-hoc guidelines to decentralized systems.
– No general barriers were detected for the reuse of reclaimed water in the EU legislation.
– Serious limitations exist on drinking water production from non-conventional water resources.
– Major constraints were determined for EC-marked compost for organic farming.
HYDROUSA is an international cooperation between 27 partners that focuses on innovative and nature based water management and water treatment solutions starting from July 2018 until December 2022.
The project strives to solve issues related to: the water supply, the wastewater problem, the biodiversity and nutrient loss, the availability of jobs (mainly in the high touristic season) and the flush of difficulties that infrastructure has to deal with at the peak of the touristic season, resulting in the unsustainable water demand. The main objective of HYDROUSA is to offer a set of solutions for these problems that are easily adaptable and replicable to other possible circumstances around the world.Read More
WAREG-European Water Regulators is the association of national and regional public authorities that hold monitoring and/or decision-making responsibilities on price-setting, quality standards and customers’ protection in the drinking water and wastewater sector, in Europe.
WAREG is currently looking for a water and wastewater regulatory policy analyst to work for the development of WAREG’s research activities and institutional relations with EU Institutions and with relevant stakeholders, in the drinking water and wastewater sector. The successful candidate will be based in Brussels, with periodical visits to the legal office in Milan. Smart working is allowed.Read More