CEEP Opinion on the Review of the Drinking Water Directive 98/83/EC (DWD), adopted by CEEP General Assembly on 16 May 2016 – PDF

Executive summary

  • The Drinking Water Directive 98/83/EC (DWD) has been and still is a well-functioning European legal instrument contributing to the supply of wholesome and clean drinking water throughout the EU. The DWD should be kept in place and further improved.
  • CEEP welcomes the elaboration of policy options for the introduction of integrated source-to-tap Risk Based Approaches in the DWD. This elaboration should include considerations of subsidiarity and flexibility at Member States’ level to leave room for approaches tailored to the legal and institutional framework in Member States.
  • CEEP stresses the need for better integration of the protection of drinking water resources in the administrative arrangements, Programme of Measures and River Basin Management Plans under the Water Framework Directive (WFD). The revision of the DWD should therefore include the introduction of a cross-reference to Water Framework Directive, in particular Article 7 thereof, the Groundwater Directive and the Priority Substances Directive.
  • The precautionary principle should be kept as a leading principle in setting drinking water quality standards and environmental quality standards for source water.
  • The revision of the DWD should include a sound legal basis (health/hygienic requirements) for the harmonised acceptance of materials and chemicals in contact with drinking water, taking full account of the work on the 4MS Common Approach.
  • Objective and scope of the DWD should be kept unchanged. Issues such as benchmarking, water as a human right, costs should be addressed separately from the revision of the DWD.
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