On 22 December 2000, the EU’s Water Framework Directive (WFD) entered into force. The directive‘s objective is to protect and enhance freshwater resources across the EU to achieve a “good waters status” by 2027. The main tools to implement the directive are the River Basin Management Plans (RBMP) and the Programmes of Measures which are made in 6-year cycles. The Directive creates a regulatory framework for protecting coastal waters, groundwater, inland surface waters and transitional waters.

Why is it important?

Drinking water is almost always purified with lime before it flows from our taps. The addition of lime binds corrosive carbonic acid and depending on its original hardness, it makes the water harder or softer to prevent boiler scale formation and corrosion in the piping. Lime is also responsible for adjusting the pH value and removing naturally occurring heavy metals from our drinking water.

Our views

The Industrial Minerals industry is committed to supporting the WFD’s goals. The sector continuously improves our knowledge to promote the sustainable use of available water resources and protect and enhance aquatic ecosystems and groundwater status. IMA-Europe highly values collaborations with other industry partners and constructive exchange with authorities and is excited to see how ongoing innovation offers more sustainable water management opportunities.

But we continue to stress that the legal and technical requirements for implementing the directive must be put in place in a timely fashion to create a sound basis for tackling the necessary work while economic and industrial activities still must remain possible.