The policy framework for implementing the WFD is drawn up by Scottish Ministers who set the policy requirements for SEPA and are responsible for approving objectives, programmes of measures and the final River Basin Management Plans for the Scotland River Basin District, required to achieve the objectives of the WFD. More information can be found from:
Scottish Ministers and the Secretary of State are jointly responsible for these issues in the cross-border Solway Tweed River Basin District.
See also River Basin Districts
The WFD was transposed into Scottish law through the Water Environment and Water Services (Scotland) Act 2003, known as the WEWS Act. The Act gives Scottish Ministers powers to introduce regulatory controls over certain activities in order to protect and improve Scotland's water environment. The Act is in three parts:
- Part 1 relates to protection of the water environment and to the implementation of the WFD to protect and improve the water environment, to promote sustainable water use, reduce discharges of priority substances and cease discharges of priority hazardous substances, and to contribute to mitigating the effects of floods and droughts.
- Part 2 covers issues relating to the provision of water and sewerage services.
- Part 3 deals with the making of orders and regulations under the Act.
Copies can be obtained from:
In drawing up the provisions of the WEWS Act the Scottish Government took the opportunity to go beyond the requirements of the WFD and introduce provisions that should result in better environmental improvements for Scotland.
Controlled activities are defined within WEWS but are modified by CAR to include the following activities:
- Abstractions from surface and groundwater;
- Impoundments of rivers, lochs, wetlands and transitional waters;
- Groundwater recharge;
- Engineering in rivers, lochs and wetlands;
- Engineering activities in the vicinity of rivers, lochs and wetland which are likely to have a significant adverse impact upon the water environment;
- Activities liable to cause pollution;
- Direct or indirect discharge of List I substances to groundwater;
- Any other activities which directly or indirectly is liable to cause a significant adverse impact upon the water environment.
- From the 1st April 2006, it is an offence to undertake any of these activities without a CAR authorization. The Regulations apply to Scotland as a whole, which includes the Scotland River Basin District as well as those parts of the cross-border Solway Tweed and Northumbria River Basin Districts within Scotland.
- Scotland has a single water authority, Scottish Water, established in April 2002 by the Water Industry (Scotland) Act 2002. Scottish Water was formed from three former public water authorities and supplies water and wastewater services to the whole of Scotland. As the abstraction of water for supply and the discharge of wastewaters are controlled activities all authorisations are now part of CAR licensing superseding the old regime of water orders and Acts of Parliament. See also Water Management:
- Information on a number of important documents e.g. current consultations, policy documents, and statements on key aspects of WFD implementation are available at: