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This page is no longer updated. The Macaulay Land Use Research Institute joined forces with SCRI joined forces on 1 April 2011 to create The James Hutton Institute. Please visit the James Hutton Institute website.

waves - wfd_about

The Water Framework Directive - an Introduction

The European Union’s Water Framework Directive will revolutionise European water and environmental policy. Existing directives focus on individual elements of environmental protection such as dangerous substances, wastewater treatment and freshwater fisheries, and prescribe rigid standards to be met. To comply, a country simply had to meet these standards.

The WFD instead focuses on the environmental outcome and sets, as its principal goal, “Good Ecological Status” by 2015. To comply, water bodies must be capable of supporting an ecology consistent with what might be expected to occur in the absence of human impacts. This applies to groundwaters, streams, rivers, estuaries and coastal waters. The directive was transposed into Scots Law by the Water Environment And Water Services Act 2003.

In addition, the WFD will promote sustainable water use and mitigate the effects of drought and flooding. Further, stakeholder involvement and River Basin Management lie at the heart of WFD implementation. The WFD will be enforced in Scotland by the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA), where further information on WFD implementation can be found.

The 3 Dee Vision Project is part of the NOLIMP Water Framework Directive Project and is funded by the European Interreg IIIB North Sea Programme.
European Community European Regional Development Fund Interreg North Sea Region Nolimp logo