European elections: Which water issues are relevant?
From the 22 th to the 25th of May all the European Member States will be voting for a new European Parliament (EP). Which are the most relevant water issues the new parliamentarians will be facing? And what different, political approaches are there to tackle these issues? Water News Europe offers you an overview.
There is no specific European Committee responsible for all water issues. Several of in the total 22 committees are dealing with different aspects of the topic. The most important committees are ‘Environment, Public Health and Food safety’, ‘Industry, research and energy’, ‘Internal market and Consumer protection’ and Agriculture and rural development’. The main issues are divided among these committees. Think about the Water Framework Directive, REACH, the use of biocides, privatization of drinking water companies and agricultural matters.
According to their political preferences the 756 parliamentarians will try to influence the implementation of existing rules and develop new regulations. In Europe the conventional, national parties are gathered in the EPP. They do not have a particular eye for water issues and tend to treat it in a conventional way. The liberal parties, gathered in ALDE, 84 parties, don’t want too much regulations and believe in the benefit of the free market. The social-democrats, gathered in Group of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament (S&D) plea for more regulations. The Group of the Greens/European Free Alliance want strict regulations regarding water quality, health issues and they plea for public water companies. The members of Parliament are chosen nationally. Most of them will seek cooperation in an European Alliance. Working together is giving them more influence.