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IWRA World Water Congress 2003 Madrid Spain
IWRA WWC2003 - default topic
Author(s): SILVA COSTA Francisco

SILVA COSTA Francisco Lecturer, University of Minho, Portugal, francisco@geografia.uminho.pt



The approach to the water theme is placed taking into account its environmental administration along the times. Stage of wate r environmental administration Time: constraint about the source To extend the nets: to drain the effluences into the river To trust the nature Building of water treatment stations: collective sanitation To trust in the public sector Clean tecnologies: reduction in the source To trust the industry To trust each other Changes in attitude: reduction face to the source Figure 1 ᅵ Schematic presentation of the main stages of the water environenmental administration The first three stages show that the strategies to prevent the water use problems are generally insufficient, badly conceptualized, and normally set down in an approach that privileges the A fourth phase in the water use politics and in the reduction of the pollution presupposes, besides the transformations resulting from the application of new production technologies, a more active role on the part of the citizens: - the constitution of pressure groups starting from very informed and participative social nets, in order to legitimate the intervention in the formulation or modification of the water politics, to demand a better acting in what concerns the environmental parameters on the part of the public sector; - the local collectivities show a growing need to dispose from information about the water on its multiple aspects ᅵ it is an essential condition the transparency in this proceeding and in the one of the environmental public politics so that the population can participate in the water resource administration; - the resolution of the water problem demands, that way, a new transparency and responsibility culture and a high degree of co-partner discipline. This frame of present reference (in the ambit of the environment, in general, and in the hydric resources, in particular) enhances 2 fundamental ideas: - the need to invest in the information broadcasting in communication channels appropriated to the sought population, based on innovative strategies of information broadcasting; and on the other hand; - the development of a culture of shared responsibility based on the local agents' participation in what concerns the definition, implementation and The information becomes this way a fundamental instrument for the civil societyᅵs participation in the environmental matters. The Environmental education appears in this context as a privileged conveyance since it is ᅵa formation and information process directed to the development of the critical conscience about the environmental matters, and to activities that lead the communities to participate in the preservation of the environmental balance.ᅵ (National Council for the Environment, 1991) - Nova (1994).

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