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Water companies want a fresh EU approach

The water companies have called for a review on the risk of pollution from material in contact with drinking water. Their comments form part of a current consultation on possible revisions to the Drinking Water Directive (DWD). 

‘The Drinking Water Directive (Council Directive 98/83/EC of 3 November 1998 on the quality of water intended for human consumption) concerns the quality of water intended for human consumption. Its objective is to protect human health from adverse effects of any contamination of water intended for human consumption by ensuring that it is wholesome and clean.


The Drinking Water Directive applies to:

  • all distribution systems serving more than 50 people or supplying more than 10 cubic meter per day, but also distribution systems serving less than 50 people/supplying less than 10 cubic meter per day if the water is supplied as part of an economic activity;
  • drinking water from tankers;
  • drinking water in bottles or containers;
  • water used in the food-processing industry, unless the competent national authorities are satisfied that the quality of the water cannot affect the wholesomeness of the foodstuff in its finished form.’ (http://ec.europa.eu)


A fresh approach to drinking water:

Water UK believes a fresh approach is now needed to address materials in contact with drinking water, including nickel, chromium and lead. The sector has tried to address this for some time however, Water UK stated that it has had “limited success and has not delivered the outcomes envisaged.”

Water UK wants the revision of the DWD to benefit manufacturers sooner, support future drinking water regulation and meet the EU Commission’s ambition to coordinate product standards.

Click here to read the Water UK response in full.


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