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The Economics of Water Management in Developing Countries

Problems, Principles and Policies

Edited by Phoebe Koundouri, Panos Pashardes, Timothy M. Swanson and Anastasios Xepapadeas

The increasing scarcity of water resources (in terms of quantity and quality) is one of the most pervasive natural resource allocation issues facing development planners throughout the world. This problem is especially prevalent in less developed countries where the management of this valuable resource has become a critical policy concern. This authoritative new volume outlines the fundamental principles and difficulties that characterise this challenging task. The authors begin by detailing the significant problems of water management which are specific to developing countries. In particular, they highlight the political economy of water management in the context of both pricing and institutional reform.
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Chapter 10: A Critical Examination of the New Integrated European Water Protection Regime

David Grimeaud


* David Grimeaud 10.1 INTRODUCTION Despite the early adoption of an EU-wide regulatory framework, the state of European waters is all but satisfying.1 In many instances, not only has the quality of EU fresh waters failed to improve, but it has often also degraded as a result of, inter alia, continuing industrial pollutant discharges or diffuse contamination by agriculture products.2 Alongside the quality aspect, experts argue also that irrigation, tourism and unsustainable patterns of water consumption have led to the deterioration of the quantitative status of many underground aquifers, in particular in southern European countries where rainfalls are likely to further decrease in the coming decades. Together with water impoverishment, aquatic degradation may well affect related biodiversity, public health standards and the conduct of many economic activities. With a view to tackling the shortcomings of the existing EU water regime and to improve the status of such waters, a regulatory reforming process has led to the adoption of a new Water Framework Directive (WFD).3 The question arises as to whether this instrument is capable of establishing the foundations for an EU sustainable water policy. While it is obviously too early to draw any conclusions on the appropriateness and design of the new water regime, this contribution seeks to shed some analytical light on certain key aspects, particularly those that bring about regulatory and policy novelty, including, inter alia, the establishment of an integrative water management system and of ecological objectives. To do so, the first part (10.2) will...

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