Water – the European Union’s Position and Vision

Water – the European Union’s Position and Vision
Author/editor: Cristina Stuparu
Year published: 2013
Volume no.: 4
Issue no.: 7


Discussing the European Union (EU) vision of the best ways of promoting acceptance of and respect for the fundamental human right to water, is an extremely complex task. To develop discussion of the human right to water and the water’s right concept is therefore a more reasonable task, and based on these theories demonstrates a true representation of the EU’s position in this field.

The general but not exhaustive presentation developed here includes the EU contribution in achieving the Millennium Development Goals, and underlines the complex set of instruments and mechanisms the EU created or developed in the water sector during the last decades. Another dimension of interest, which is explored here is the implementation of initiatives carried out in relation to water and people's rights, and how this was coordinated and joined together at the regional and international level. The European Union has 28 national, independent Member States, with functional links between them and within the EU. These States also link with the different bodies and EU specialised agencies and organisations, with the support of the EU and cooperation with the third countries, together with international organisations regionally and internationally.

The EU vision is integrative. The fundamental right to water is interconnected with the big family of human rights. The water strategies, policies, initiatives and programs, independent of or related to other fields of activity, are part of the overall picture of sustainable development, economic growth and environmental protection. Integration has two aspects: on the one hand, the relationship between the EU and its Member States, and on the other, between the EU Member States and the rest of the world simultaneously, for the benefit of all citizens, whether they be Europeans or not.

This paper aims to offer some guiding elements to other researchers for a better understanding of the European Union’s position and vision in the water sector and of future directions, targets and priorities in this field, which bring, at the same time, arguments for the EU’s well-deserved role in the international arena.

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