Observatorio de I+D+i UPM

Memorias de investigación
Other publications:
The Water Framework Directive and the need to coordinate water plans across jurisdictions
Year:2008
Research Areas
  • Agricultural policy
Information
Abstract
The borders which segment their water basins in distinct jurisdictions are not the expression of absolute sovereignty, not even between independent States. Within a single State, or within the EU, the different jurisdictions through which a basin runs mark areas of juxtaposed sovereignty, whether or not this is in a federal State. Neither is the EU a Federal State, nor is Spain a centralist State. On the practical and applied level, the processes of change caused by global warming stir up agreements between States and orientate the action plans towards the whole of the basins. However, the impact and the pressure, as well as the solutions which must be passed to mitigate them, have in many cases an expression in time and in space. If there is no specific agent responsible for the pressure, then it is the administration that must account for the state of the basins that cross their territory. Spain is going through a redefinition process of its competences over water between its Government and that of the ARs. All of this is occuring in parallel with the application of the WFD on all basins in the EU. The integration of the measures over the whole basin is the way to make sure that the quality objectives are achieved at minimum cost. It is very likely that the combination of programmes of minimum cost measures requires greater effort in the upper zones of the basins, strategies that will allow for benefit to be taken from the overspills of costs. Between different jurisdictions, this should only be applied through payments or compensation from above to below. If these are impossible or non-viable politically or administratively, the average plans will be cost-inefficient. However, it has been argued that it is precisely the existence of borders between jurisdictions which eases this type of agreement, as opposed to basins with a solitary sovereignty. The reason is that it is much easier to create representatives of the ‘public commodities’ when separate jurisdictions exist in different stretches of the rivers. However, in the context of water scarcity, where voluntary reassignment via markets could have greater potentiality and reach, it has been seen that in the Federal States exchanges are rare and do not have the support of the state or regional administrations. This occurs because the efficiency gains that are derived from the exchanges on the part of the grantor are only capitalised on by the ceding agencies; meanwhile, on the side of the purchaser, the gains are capital income and work. Although globally the exchanges can be beneficial, the distribution of those benefits can be greater for the purchasing area. From the doubts about the division of benefits come the difficulties that there are in water transactions between jurisdictions. From this, we conclude that where water is scarce, the fragmentation of the basins is not positive for the administration of the scarcity.
International
Si
Entity
Fundación Manuel Giménez Abad (Cortes de Aragón), Foro de las Federaciones (Canadá) y Sociedad Expo 2008 (Tribuna del Agua).
Place
Zaragoza
Pages
Reference/URL
9788493 547110
Publication type
Otras conferencias
Participants
  • Autor: Alberto Garrido Colmenero (UPM)
Research Group, Departaments and Institutes related
  • Creador: Grupo de Investigación: Economía Agraria y Gestión de los Recursos Naturales
  • Departamento: Economía y Ciencias Sociales Agrarias
  • Centro o Instituto I+D+i: Centro de Estudios e Investigación para la Gestión de Riesgos Agrarios Medioambientales (CEIGRAM)
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