Green Week opens in Brussels
The Europe’s largest environment conference kicked off yesterday 22nd May 2012 under the banner “The Water Challenge – Every Drop Counts”.
This year’s edition of Green Week is dedicated to water, and will see some 3000 participants gather for three days to discuss water-related issues.
Stakeholders, NGOs, government representatives and EU officials will search for solutions to key water problems, like how to safeguard the availability of good quality water against a backdrop of rapid population growth and ever more apparent climate change. Organisations and companies will showcase best practices at a 52-stand exhibition, and numerous side events include screenings of the films “La Soif du monde”, “Oceans”, and “Africa Turns Green”. The week also features the European Business Awards for the Environment, which honour innovative companies that successfully combine innovation, competitiveness and outstanding environmental performance, and the 3rd European Water Conference, a high-level stakeholder event.
A recent European Commission survey shows that seven out of ten Europeans think that water-related problems are a serious concern. Pollution from point and diffuse sources, over-abstraction of water and alterations to rivers and lakes threaten efforts to achieve good status for European waters by 2015. Water-related natural disasters such as droughts and floods have become more frequent and severe in large parts of our continent, and their severity and frequency is expected to increase as a result of climate change and changes in land use.
Green Week will present an overview of water-related EU policies, and consider how they should evolve to meet the challenges ahead.
The week’s events will feed into the Blueprint to Safeguard Europe’s Water Resources scheduled for November this year. As a step in the preparatory process for the Blueprint, Green Week is also hosting the 3rd European Water Conference, a platform for consultation and debate between a large number of water stakeholders, Member States and the European Commission. The Blueprint, which has the long-term objective of ensuring the availability of good quality water for sustainable and equitable water use, will form the new EU policy response to the challenges surrounding water as a resource.
Find out more about the Green Week 2012 and follow the sessions live here.