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Publication - Guidance

River basin management planning in the Solway Tweed river basin district: guidance

Published: 5 Dec 2007
Part of:
Environment and climate change
ISBN:
978 0 7559 1609 2

Guidance for SEPA and the UK's Environment Agency on river basin management planning in the Solway Tweed river basin district (RBD).

15 page PDF

219.5kB

15 page PDF

219.5kB

Contents
River basin management planning in the Solway Tweed river basin district: guidance
Page 3

15 page PDF

219.5kB

1. INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background

The Water Framework Directive 2000/60/ EC ( WFD) requires Member States to put in place integrated approaches for the protection, improvement and sustainable use of the water environment. The key mechanism for delivering these aims will be the river basin management planning process which applies to a "river basin district" (a geographical area defined on the basis of hydrology).

The river basin management planning process involves setting environmental objectives for groundwater and surface waters (including lakes/lochs, rivers, estuaries and coastal waters) within the river basin district, and putting in place programmes of measures to meet those objectives. The WFD also requires that other relevant environmental priorities, economic considerations and social issues are considered when setting environmental objectives. These must be documented in a River Basin Management Plan ( RBMP) for each River Basin District ( RBD).

1.2 Role of this guidance

This statutory guidance sets out the expectations of Scottish Ministers and the Secretary of State (referred to as 'the Ministers') about the joint delivery of the WFD in the Solway Tweed RBD by the Scottish Environment Protection Agency ( SEPA) and the Environment Agency (England and Wales) ( EA) - referred to as 'the Agencies'.

This guidance underpins the delivery of river basin management planning in the Solway Tweed RBD, and sets out:

  • key steps and milestones for development and approval of key documents; and
  • the Ministers' expectations for the Agencies to coordinate functions and approaches.

Whilst this guidance is for the Agencies, stakeholders in the Solway Tweed RBD will also find it informative and relevant.

Further guidance may be issued as policy is developed.

This guidance complements the approaches described in the Agencies' documents:

  • River Basin Planning Framework for the Solway Tweed River Basin District (published August 2006); and
  • Solway Tweed River Basin Planning: A Plan of Action (consultation issued December 2006).

1.3 The Solway Tweed River Basin District and its management

The Water Environment (Water Framework Directive) (Solway Tweed River Basin District) Regulations 2004 ( SI 2004/99) transpose the WFD in respect of this RBD. These regulations are referred to in this guidance as 'the transposing regulations'.

The transposing regulations set out the boundaries of the Solway Tweed RBD (see Figure 1). They assign responsibilities for implementing the WFD in this RBD to 'the Ministers' - the Scottish Ministers and the Secretary of State - and 'the Agencies' - SEPA and the EA.

SEPA and the EA are jointly responsible for implementing and coordinating river basin management planning in the Solway Tweed RBD taking into consideration the range of plans and controls in both Scotland and England for managing the water environment.

Figure 1. Map of the Solway Tweed RBD

Figure 1. Map of the Solway Tweed RBD

1.4 Defined roles and responsibilities

The Ministers, the Agencies and public bodies such as local authorities have specific roles in the river basin management planning process (summarised in Table 1).

Table 1. Responsibilities of public bodies in river basin management planning

Bodies/organisations

Responsibilities

The Ministers in Westminster and Holyrood

Supported by their respective administrations and officials.

  • act jointly as the appropriate authority.
  • set the legal and policy framework that underpins the river basin management planning process (for example, objective-setting process, environmental standards and legal tools).
  • provide direction and guidance to the Agencies on WFD implementation in the Solway Tweed RBD including the river basin management planning process and ministerial involvement.
  • approve the RBMPs (including objectives and any alternative objectives where appropriate and summary of programme of measures). 1

The Agencies:

  • Scottish Environment Protection Agency ( SEPA)
  • Environment Agency ( EA)
  • act as joint Competent Authorities under the WFD.
  • co-ordinate the various steps of the river basin management planning process and ensure that consultation, drafting and requirements are carried out to the required time-lines. 2
  • establish, operate and, when appropriate, update a coordinated environmental monitoring programme and classification system for the Solway Tweed RBD. 3
  • ensure the programme of measures is co-ordinated for the whole of the Solway Tweed RBD.
  • implement relevant parts of the programme of measures (e.g. through regulatory and other functions).

Other public bodies (including Scotland's responsible authorities) 4

  • have a statutory responsibility to have regard to the RBMP and any supplementary plans when undertaking their functions.
  • provide relevant information and assistance to the Ministers and the Agencies. 5,6

Contact

Email: ceu@gov.scot