New water quality standards

Published 20-05-2011
A directive on environmental quality standards for surface water was among the 27 legal acts incorporated into the EEA Agreement on 20 May 2011. The EU directive from 2008 aims to improve the protection of rivers, lakes and coastal waters against pollution from a wide range of chemical substances.

The directive specifically introduces Environmental Quality Standards (EQS) for a list of priority substances and certain other pollutants already implemented in the EEA Agreement. The directive is a follow-up to the Water Framework Directive (WFD), the cornerstone of EU water protection policy, which is also part of the EEA Agreement and requires that EEA waters should achieve "good status" by 2015.

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