Warsaw, 29 February 2012

Press Information

We know the public consultation results on key issues with Polish waters management


On Tuesday, 28 February 2011 held place a V National Water Forum, organized by the National Water Management (KZGW). During the Forum, nearly 120 experts, representatives of various institutions and organizations of the tributary of the Vistula and the Oder, debated on the results of nationwide research, conducted on behalf of the KZGW by Research Corporation PRETENDENT. The aim was to diagnose the most important problems of water management. The project represents first such large scale research in Poland. Both research and this year's Forum were carried out as a part of the public consultation conducted in relation to the implementation by Poland the Water Framework Directive.

To participate in the study, lasting from December 2011 to February this year has been invited about 800 representatives of industry, agriculture, government, academia and environmental organizations. During the individual and group interviews, experts were asked to identify significant water management issues and their causes.

The main problem identified by all groups of respondents is the pollution of surface waters. The experts have chosen it as the most important Polish problem of water management, most common has been perceived by the representatives of universities and environmental organizations,
and the least by entrepreneurs. 72% of the experts have observed in their region littering of rivers and streams, and 28% of respondents rated the quality of surface water as bad or very bad. The reason for this is, according to experts, littering, disposal of untreated households sewage, inadequate treatment of water by sewage treatment plants and too little sanitation of villages and rural areas.

The second key problem is the lack of water, especially in the opinion of representatives of science institutes, agriculture and fisheries. For business this is a matter as important as water pollution. Respondents pointed to the presence in its region of large fluctuations in water level in rivers and streams (56%), increased risk of fires in the summer (51%), frequent periods of drought (51%) and overgrowing and aging reservoirs (54%) .

Flood conditions are ranked in third position - up to 50% of respondents confirm the presence of flood risk in their region, as well as increased surface runoff - a large amount of water are not holding in ditches, flowing on the streets or terrain after the rain.

The fourth most frequently reported problem was the poor quality of water for utility purposes. Despite this, as much as 89% experts when asked about the water quality in their area assessed it as good or very good.

The experts also raised as a major problem spread the responsibility for water management between different administrative units, the lack of a coherent and effective national water policy and imperfect regulations. 69% of them are worried about increase of prices for water as a result of the use of more sophisticated water treatment technology. Experts are explicitly opposed to the introduction of even a small tax to protect the environment. As much as 58% of respondents answered that they would not agree to such a solution.

During the debate over the results of research, experts also pointed the insufficient level of public environmental education, untapped potential for shipping, tourism and water-power of
Polish rivers and the necessity to increase the level of retention. They called for changes in Polish water law.

- The results surprised us only in part - commented the results of Janusz Wisniewski, acting President KZGW. - Problems related to the Polish community water management are well known. Our attention was drawn to the fact that, despite the floods in 2010, more visible and felt by the experts are the effects of drought, and yet in Poland, unlike other countries, there are no consumption of water limits. The results also showed that despite awareness of the problems, the public does not want to participate in the cost of solving them. Meanwhile, the current challenges are due to the lack of investment in the 50's and 60's and this backlog we need to catch up in the next few years - added J. Wisniewski.

Experts also endorse a prevailing course of public consultation and planned activities related to the implementation of European Parliament and the Council Directive 2000/60/EC from 23 October 2000, known as the Water Framework Directive (WFD).The main Poland task related to
implementation of the directive is to achieve till 2015 good quality of surface waters, and ground waters. To achieve this objective, the Directive requires Poland to determine the process of wide public consultation in significant water management issues, and prepare corrective action plans. In the implementation of the directive are included wide society circles and all sectors of the economy, including industry, transport, agriculture and municipal economy.

- We try to look for solutions that, comply with environmental protection, allow to use water in Poland in the best way for these purposes, which accompany human development,
that is, both economic, industrial as also agricultural development or inland waterway
with compliance with all aspects of the natural environment - said Stanislav Gawłowski, Secretary of State in the Ministry of Environment.

Time for submitting opinions and proposals in realized now consultation stage, passed on
February 29 this year. The study was funded by the National Fund for Environmental Protection
and Water Management. Honorary patrons of the V National Water Forum took Gawłowski Stanislav, State Secretary in the Ministry of Environment.


About the National Board of Water Management:

Water management is one of the sectors of national economy strongly linked to other areas of economic life. Its main task, understood as an economic and scientific activity, is the rational development and utilization of surface and ground waters, including their quantity and quality. For this purpose, National Water Management (KZGW) has been established. It was created on 1 July 2006 under Article. 90 paragraph 4 Act of 18 July 2001 - Water Law and the Decree of the Prime Ministers of 27 June 2006 on granting the Statutes of the National Water Management Board.

President of the National Water Management is a central government body competent for water management and water use. President KZGW activity is supervised by the minister responsible for water management.

To President KZGW come under seven Regional Boards of Directors of Water Management (RBWM)
in Gdansk, Gliwice, Krakow, Poznan, Szczecin, Warsaw and Wroclaw.

About the Research Corporation PRETENDENT:

KB PRETENDENT is an organization specializing in social research and marketing. It carries out research for the public sector (local government) and business customers
throughout the country. It offers the services of an experienced and competent team of researchers who can fully diagnose the client's information needs and deliver the highest quality research. This is possible by using different research methods and techniques (quantitative and qualitative), and flexible targeting and flexible approach to customer needs.

The Testa Communications:

TESTA Communications Agency, formerly TESTA Public Relations, operates on the market since 2001
and provides services in the field of public relations, marketing and organization of events - including conferences, seminars, concerts, festivals and other events. Company specialty is integrated communication strategies. All projects are complex: a strategy - planning - implementation - evaluation.

Media Contact:

Maja Kurzyna
Testa Communications
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Tel.: 601-512-727

Joanna Marzec

Spokesman of the National Water Management
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Tel: (22) 37 20 212
fax: (22) 37 20 290