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Thursday, April 23, 2009

Project idea for ENPI call - "Water communities"

Title of proposed project:

Water Communities -
Empowerment of water communities in the Mediterranean

ENPI. Deadline May 2009 (pending publication).


The goal of Water Communities is to empower the local organizations of water users in different fields in order to promote public participation and democratic water management, thus improving the performance of water management and the protection of the environment.

The creation of communities of irrigators and territorial boards of water users is a pre-requisite to define proper water prices, implementation of infrastructures, training of the operators (farmers, irrigators, technicians) and responsible local water management. At the same time, these structures enhance the civil society and the local democracies. These communities are particularly important in areas where water is scarce, and especially if important wetlands or natural sites are involved. Finally, the performance of water management and better irrigations are a motor for local economic development.

These actions require the involvement of National, Regional and Local Authorities in order to facilitate and develop a proper legislative framework. There are also traditional structures such as Water consuetudinary tribunals and others, existing in Arabic countries and in Spain. These structures could be promoted and protected via this project.

The project would include:
  • Analysis of needs: legislative framework, state of local technologies of water management, need of infrastructures, economic development.

  • Definition of “hot spots” or areas of urgent action (wetlands, protected areas, water bodies in risk of overexploitation, soils in risk of salinization, etc).

  • Creation and empowerment of local structures of participation.

  • Benchmark study and exchange of best practices.

  • Support to next steps of improvement of water management: Use of treated urban waste water in Spain, drip irrigation and irrigation planning in other partner countries, urban water management plans and other actions to be decided by the partners.

  • Creation of a transnational advisory and monitoring committee, whose mission will be providing with legal, technical and scientific advice and follow-up of the actions undertaken.

  • Gender approach: Promotion of the participation of women in all the actions.

  • Dissemination activities and awareness actions.

  • Strategic Environmental Assessment of the actions.

Rice crops in l'Albufera, Valencia. (c) http://www.eco-rice.net/

Partner consortium (so far):

Federación de Comunidades de Regantes de la Comunitat Valenciana.
Society for the Protection of the Nature in Lebanon.

Further partners being sought
Members of Wateregio network.

Budget foreseen: 2.000.000 €. Co-funded by ERDF in EU Member States, and by ENPI in Mediterranean partner countries.

Foreseen project duration: 18 months

Contact Valencian Region:
Mr Alfonso Alcolea – aalcolea@delcomval.be
Mr José Pascual –
Lebanon :
Ms Tala Al-Khatib –
Ms Dalia Al-Jawhary – dalia.jawhary@gmail.com

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