Proposal for a Regulation on minimum requirements for water reuse

Author (Corporate)
Series Details COM (2018) 337
Publication Date 28/05/2018
Content Type


Legislative proposal published by the European Commission in May 2019, which lays down minimum requirements for water quality and monitoring and the obligation to carry out specified key risk management tasks, for the safe reuse of treated urban waster water in the context of integrated water management.

Further information:

The legislation defines minimum quality standards for reclaimed water to be used for agricultural irrigation. It also sets out obligations for production, distribution and storage operators, as well as risk management measures. The purpose is to guarantee that reclaimed water is safe for its intended use, thereby ensuring a high level of protection of human and animal health and environment, addressing water scarcity and the resulting pressure on water resources in a coordinated way throughout the European Union (EU), thus also contributing to the efficient functioning of the internal market.

The proposal is part of the Commission's 2018 Work Programme, following up on the Circular Economy Action Plan, and completes the existing EU legal framework on water and foodstuffs. It was adopted by the European Commission on 28 May 2018. The European Parliament adopted its negotiating position on 12 February 2019, followed by the Council of the European Union on 26 June. An informal agreement between the co-legislators on a compromise text was reached on 3 December. This was formally endorsed by the Council on 7 April 2020 and by the Parliament on 14 May.

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Related Links
Commentary and Analysis
EPRS: Briefing, September 2018: Initial Appraisal of a European Commission Impact Assessment
EurActiv, 11/02/2019: No water, no reuse
EPRS: Briefing, April 2020: Water reuse: Setting minimum requirements

EUR-Lex: SWD(2018)249: Impact assessment
EUR-Lex: SWD(2018)250: Executive summary of the impact assessment
European Parliament: Legislative Observatory: Procedure File for proposal on minimum requirements for water reuse
European Parliament: Legislative Train: Regulation on minimum requirements for the re-use of wastewater
European Commission: DG Environment: Water reuse
European Commission: Press Release, 28/05/2018: Water reuse: Commission proposes measures to make it easier and safer for agricultural irrigation
European Parliament: Press Release, 22/01/2019: MEPs back plans to promote water reuse for agricultural irrigation
Council of the European Union: Press Release, 26/06/2019: Water reuse for agricultural irrigation: Council agrees general approach
European Commission: Press Release, 03/12/2019: Water reuse: Commission welcomes the provisional agreement on minimum requirements for water reuse in agriculture
Council of the European Union: Press Release, 18/12/2019: Water reuse for agricultural irrigation: Council approves provisional deal
Council of the European Union: Press Release, 07/04/2020: Water reuse for agricultural irrigation: Council adopts new rules
European Parliament: Press Release, 14/05/2020: Parliament approves increased water reuse

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