On 13 April 2023, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) held a public hearing to address the pressing issue of water poverty and its implications on social policy. The event brought together water experts and stakeholders to mitigate the effects of water poverty, particularly on vulnerable communities. The hearing is part of the EESC's efforts to put water at the top of the EU agenda through a call for an "EU Blue Deal."
Macro-regional cooperation is part of the process of strengthening democracy in the EU, and of strengthening bottom-up initiatives. Such cooperation is a positive catalyst, defending and complementing the EU's fundamental values. This is one of the conclusions from the conference on the "Role and significance of the Black Sea region and its connection with the Danube Strategy". The conference took place on 14 and 15 June in Albena, Bulgaria.
Adopting a human rights approach to water management, boosting investments in infrastructure and technologies, introducing water consumption labels and price restructuring are among the key recommendations of the six EESC opinions on water adopted at its July plenary. They make up the first wave of EESC proposals for a comprehensive water policy for Europe under its Blue Deal initiative. On 26 October, the EESC will present its Call for an EU Blue Deal to the EU institutions and stakeholders.
As water scarcity and pollution continue to pose global challenges, the current EU policy framework seems insufficient. To address this, top-level water experts gathered on 27 February at the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) to identify possible solutions. The hearing marks the beginning of the EESC's work on water.