EVENT | WATER SCARCITY AND DROUGHT: from crisis management to long term adaptation
More than 100 persons attended – in person or from remote - the seminar “WATER SCARCITY AND DROUGHT: from crisis management to long term adaptation”, which was held in Seville on 5 July.
Co-organised by Aqua Publica Europea, together with its members AEOPAS (Spanish association of public operators) and EMASESA (Seville’s water operator), the seminar aimed to discuss the conditions for long-term adaptation to water scarcity in the context of climate change.
Representatives from public water utilities, NGOs, local and European institutions, as well as academics contributed to pinpointing the main conditions and actions that are needed for our societies to cope with the increasing water stress while avoiding potential conflicts among users. Speakers emphasised in particular:
- The importance of long-term planning based on robust methodologies and data to anticipate future change.
- The need for an integrated approach to water resource management, especially by better incorporating urban water cycle management with planning at the river basin level.
- The consideration of the interrelation between quantitative and qualitative aspects is a key to defining appropriate allocation regimes between different water uses (in particular agriculture), in line also with the provisions of the Water Framework Directive.
- The potential of innovation and in particular smart technologies to increase efficiency in water use.
- The duty of solidarity between territories as a condition to ensure equity in access and avoid conflicts.
- The value of raising the awareness of citizens about the challenges ahead and the need for responsible use of water.
Above all, all speakers agreed that the systemic nature of the challenge ahead requires the involvement and mobilisation of the widest range of social actors to achieve shared solutions and sustainable arrangements for the responsible management of an ever more limited resource.
- Setting the scene: What political change to address climate change, Prof Cristina Monge, University of Zaragoza
- Drought and water scarcity: initiatives at EU level, Dagmar Behrendt Kaljarikova, European Commission, Directorate-General for Environment - Sustainable freshwater management
- Aguas de Cádiz (Spain), Jesús Oliden, Director
- VIVAQUA (Belgium), Laurence Bovy, Chief Executive Officer
- Águas de Gaia (Portugal), Miguel Lemos Rodrigues, President