Situation and Trends of Water Management - The Mediterranean Approach
Challenges of the New Water Policies for the XXI Century
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The 21st Century is going to witness a radically different water systems management from the one we have known all along the recently finished century, which has been characterized by the construction of numerous and enormous, though necessary, hydraulic infrastructure works. Today, three facts have set up a new scenario: firstly, water, subjected to high requirements due to the competition of different uses, is a very vulnerable resource. Secondly, it should be kept in mind that the most profitable investments have already been made. Those still to be undertaken imply strong investments that would set the price of water at an uncompetitive value, if the principle of cost recovery demanded by the new EU Water Framework Directive is implemented. And finally, it cannot be ignored the society's growing environmental awareness, brought about by the evidence of the progressive deterioration of our environment which is demanding a sustainable management.