3rd River Basin Management Plan – Consulation Conference
The Energy & Water Agency (EWA) and the Environment and Resources Authority (ERA) organised a one-day conference, on Friday, 7th October 2022, at the Phoenicia Hotel, Floriana from 9.30am – 2.30pm. This event was part of its public consultation process leading to the development of the 3rd River Basin Management Plan.
The conference was presided by Hon. Miriam Dalli, Minister for the Environment, Energy and Enterprise and attended by several key players in the field. All stakeholders and the public have been invited to attend to share their views during this consultative stage.
Under the implementation process of the EU’s Water Framework Directive, Malta is required to prepare its 3rd River Basin Management Plan. This management plan, which is jointly being prepared by EWA and ERA, will outline the main challenges which need to be addressed for the achievement of good status for Malta’s water resources and the measures which need to be implemented to progressively achieve this good status conditions.
The aim of this consultation was to address Malta’s water management challenges, highlight the gaps towards the achievement of good status conditions for our groundwater, inland surface, transitional waters and coastal waters. This consultative meeting enabled a discussion on the measures to be included as part of the 3rd River Basin Management Plan, whilst ensuring an integrated and sustainable approach to water management in the Maltese islands.
Two international experts shared their experience on the approach and measures adopted in other European members states for integrated water management. This was followed by three panel discussions to allow the public and interested stakeholders to come up with proposals for measures which can contribute to the achievement of good status.
Manuel Sapiano, CEO of the Energy and Water Agency emphasised the importance that everyone works together and that all stakeholders are key in recognising the main challenges and gaps towards the achievement of good status conditions for our groundwater, inland surface, transitional waters, and coastal waters. All water resources are important and need to be safeguarded. Sapiano added that the feedback of all stakeholders is significant and invited all the meeting participants to openly provide all their feedback during the panel discussion session to enable us to develop a plan with realistic measures.
Kevin Mercieca, Chief Executive Officer, Environment and Resources added that all relevant sectors can help in safeguarding our water resource and ensure its sustainable use to secure its availability of natural water in the long term to address not only Malta’s water demand, but also to support our natural heritage.
The Minister for the Environment, Energy and Enterprise, Miriam Dalli thanked all entities and people involved in the implementation of the third river basin management plan. Minister Dalli highlighted the importance of such initiatives to help like minded stakeholders to meet and share their views on the importance of water as a resource which is usually overlooked and taken for granted. Water is a shared responsibility of all, and we need to strive to find ways to help in conserving it. All the work being carried out in area of the water sector is relevant, from the smallest initiative to the implementation of large scale projects to properly manage this important resource.
EWA and ERA have taken note of the points raised during the panel discussions and the feedback received from the general public for these to be recommended for inclusion as part of the measures in the 3rd River Basin Management Plan.
The conference was organized in collaboration with the following entities:
the Ministry for Environment, Energy and Enterprise, the Energy & Water Agency (EWA) and the Environment and Resources Authority (ERA).