236,432 research outputs found

    Water Policy and Sustainability of Irrigated Farming Systems in Italy

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    The objective of this paper is to provide an analysis of the sustainability of irrigated agriculture in Italy in the context of CAP reform and Water Framework Directive. The work combines scenario analysis, multicriteria mathematical programming simulation models and economic, social and environmental indicators. Five irrigated farming systems were considered: cereals, rice, fruit, vegetables and citrus. The results show the diversity of Italian irrigated farming systems and the trade-off between socio-economic and environmental performance. This highlights the need for a differentiated application of the Water Framework Directive, balancing water conservation and rural development objectives.water framework directive, irrigation, economic models, sustainability indicators, scenarios, Land Economics/Use, Resource /Energy Economics and Policy, Q1, Q2, Q25,

    New directions in water resources management: The role of water pricing policies

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    Water resources will face increasing competition and higher environmental concerns during this century. To meet these challenges, the new Water Framework Directive has drawn up an integrated framework and established the basic principles for a sustainable water policy in the European Union. The introduction of water prices reflecting the true cost of irrigation is one of its most innovative components. In this paper, a positive mathematical programming model is developed to assess the environmental and socio-economic impacts of water pricing policies in Spanish irrigated lands. The model interface allows friendly use and easy replication in a large number of irrigation districts, selected throughout the Spanish territory. The model results show the impact on environmental indicators, water consumption, cropping patterns, technology adoption, labor, farmers' income, and the water agency revenues when different scenarios of cost recovery are considered. It is argued that this modeling approach may be used as a management tool to assist in the implementation of the cost recovery approach of the new Water Framework Directive

    Enhancing Irrigation Efficiency but Increasing Water Use: The Jevons' Paradox

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    In this paper we analyze the conditions under which increasing technical efficiency of water use in the agricultural sector might not reduce water demand and pressures on water ecosystems. Departing from this basic problem we discuss how policy measures performed to enhance water productivity in the agriculture might be transformed into effective alternatives to improve the conservation of water resources and then guarantee the successful implementation of the Water Framework Directive. A preference revelation model is presented in the third section of the paper and one empirical application to an irrigation district in southern Spain is used in the fourth section to discuss the effectiveness of water savings measures.Water Framework Directive, Water Economics, Agricultural Economics, Simulation Models, Preference Revelation., Resource /Energy Economics and Policy,

    A Multi-Criteria Approach for Irrigation Water Management

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    The major implications that the European Union (EU) Water Framework Directive (WFD) may have in irrigated agriculture were analysed using alternative water policy measures. The consequences of policy change were evaluated in a case study (Baixo Alentejo, Portugal), using a Multi-Criteria Decision Making (MCDM) model that simulates farmers’ preferred behaviour. The study compares the effects of water pricing (volumetric and flat tariffs) and consumption quotas, in farmer’s income, water agency revenues, agricultural employment and water demand for irrigation. Model results indicate that the adjustments in farmer’s responses are dependent on the policy strategy enforced and on the policy level.Water Framework Directive, Flat Pricing, Volumetric Pricing, Multi- Objective Programming, Water Management, Portugal,

    The environment as a challenge for governmental responsibility: The case of the European Water Framework Directive

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    The European Water Framework Directive is shaping a new conception of integrative water protection. In this article, the consequences of the Water Framework Directive in respect to national environmental policy will be discussed in referring to the notion of responsibility which is a central concept of political philosophy and theory. It will be shown that the new conception of integrative water protection entails a fundamental change in European water protection policy and also environmental policy at all. It implies that environmental policy has not only to prevent environmental damage but in particular has to warrant a good status of the environment, such that it must maintain a good status of water or even achieve it if this status does not exist. Achieving and maintaining a good status of the environment is, however, an encompassing task. Thereby, state power and will eventually be overexerted. The threat of such overexertion has to be kept in mind in discussing the perspective of the so called New Environmental Governance. It will be pointed out that the New Environmental Governance is not primarily a form of some sort of democratic participation but rather designed to improve state power in environmental politics. --Environmental politics,European Water Framework Directive,Responsibility,Environmental Governance

    Sustainability of economic development and governance patterns in water management - an overview on the reorganisation of public utilities in Campania, Italy, under EU Framework Directive in the field of water policy (2000/60/CE)

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    The paper addresses the issue of sustainable development in water policy under the EU Framework Directive (2000/60/CE), and its implications on the governance of public utilities. Economic efficiency and environmental protection, far from being contradictory, are necessarily complementary in order to achieve the EU Water Framework Directive principles and objectives. Assuming public utilities as “environmental services”, the first part focuses on the theory of economic regulation for public utilities and innovative models of public/private governance for water management. In the second part, following the steps undertaken in Campania (since the first national reform in 1994), the paper tries to identify the main trends in water policies and management, resulting from the local governement efforts to comply with both environmental protection requirements under the EU Framework Directive and economic development programmes. The field of analysis is EU Structural Funds policy, as implemented by the Regional Operational Programme of Campania 2000-2006, which supports private and public investments in water infrastructures and management. According to the European regional policy, environmental protection requirements must be integrated into the definition and implementation of development programmes aimed at financing water infrastructures and innovative management of water services. The mid-term review on the performance of Structural Funds in Campania, shows that public/private partnership plays a crucial role in water policy, even for the integration of environmental concerns into the reorganisation of public utilities management.

    Monitoring and classification of lakes in Finland

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    In Finland, as in other member countries of the European Union, preparations for implementing the EC Water Framework Directive (WFD) have begun. The article describes the current monitoring and classification strategies for Finnish Lakes


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    In 1998, Portugal and Spain signed, at Albufeira, a Convention to regulate access to their common rivers. Most of them have their upstream basins in Spain and flow into Portugal. A growing water demand in Spain had much reduced their flows into Portugal. The Portuguese priority in the Convention was to assure stream flows for the Alqueva dam, located on the Guadiana River. This paper discusses the functioning of the Albufeira Convention and makes proposals for its revision. The bilateral Commission has hardly operated. In 2005, the exceptional dry year regime has been activated by Spain only on the Duero/Douro River. The Water Framework Directive, the Berlin Rules, Water Markets and the Catalan Voting Rules might help to a revised Convention aiming at better protecting the common rivers.Albufeira Convention, Water Framework Directive, Berlin Rules, Water Markets, Catalan Voting Rules

    A Policy Development Perspective on Drinking Water Policy

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    This paper seeks to address the lack of knowledge in the water industry of how policy development can be understood to have shaped the development and application of European Union (EU) drinking water policy. In particular, the paper develops a comparative understanding of how policy development can be viewed as having affected the development and application of the Drinking Water Directive (80/778/EEC) in England/Wales and the Republic of Ireland. As a result of this focus, the paper explores policy development issues relating to conflicting interests, invalid causal theories, political symbolism, lack of attention to detail by policy makers, and the allocation of duties and resources. It is subsequently established that consideration of these issues is useful in fostering a focused understanding of how policy development may have affected policy application. Despite the significant changes which took place with regard to the development of the current Drinking Water Directive (98/883/EC), the paper concludes by arguing that greater attention should be accorded the conflicting interests and abilities of Member States during the development of EU water policy, particularly if attempts are to be made to identify measures targeted at improving the application of EU water policy in a diverse political and economic union of member states.Peer reviewedFinal Accepted Versio

    The Challenge of Irrigation Water Pricing in the Water Framework Directive

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    The scarcity and degradation of water resources is an important environmental challenge in Europe, which is being addressed by the Water Framework Directive, the Urban Waste Water Directive, and the Nitrates Directive. Water pricing is an essential component of the Water Framework Directive, and the increase of water prices up to full recovery costs is a valuable measure in urban networks. However, water pricing may not be the best reallocation instrument for irrigated agriculture. In irrigated agriculture, water pricing is challenging because water for irrigation is usually a common pool resource. Water pricing could recover costs and indicate scarcity in the long run, but it doesn’t seem feasible in the short run for irrigation water reallocation. Other policy instruments such as water markets and institutional cooperation seem more operational for water reallocation. The Water Framework Directive includes the 'polluter pays principle' as the suitable rule for pollution abatement. But the principle cannot be applied to agricultural pollution since this pollution is non-point, and water pricing is not the right abatement instrument. Also, the flimsy outcomes from the Nitrates Directive since 1991 call for a revision of the pollution abatement measures. This paper reviews the water policy instruments that could be more suitable for achieving the objectives of the Water Framework Directive, and the paper highlights the need for combining instruments to deal with the public good, common pool resource, and private good characteristics of water