All countries in the EU are to bring their waters to good ecological and chemical status as defined by the Directive. “Good Ecological” status is defined by the EU in terms of biological community and hydrological characteristics. Biological community is not concrete or quantifiable, so good biological community is that which is similar to an ecosystem with minimal human impact. The EU defines “Good Chemical” status in terms of compliance with quality standards and levels for certain chemical substances. The Directive combines past European legislations concerning all water sources in Europe, and combines them into one in order to better manage and eliminate water pollution. Urban waste and agriculture have been shown to be leading causes of waste and pollution in Europe’s water systems. The EU is imposing stringent restrictions, and unifying many programs in order to limit the impact of these two large sources of pollution (European Commission).
There is rising concern that Germany will not be able to meet the standards set forth by the Water Framework Directive. The proposed date to conform to these standards is 2015, and while many countries are well on their way, Germany looks to be hard-pressed to make this deadline. The poor outlook for Germany is based off a ten-year study of the pollutant levels in four of Germany largest northern rivers; the Elbe, Wesser, Almer, and Ems. This study... [continues]
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