Drought Decree 2023, there is the ok of the CDM: what it provides

With urgent provisions for the upgrading of water infrastructure. Yes to the extraordinary national commissioner for water scarcity

The Council of Ministers has approved a decree-law introducing urgent provisions for the prevention and contrast of drought and for the strengthening and adaptation of water infrastructures. The decree is on the proposal of the president Giorgia Meloni and the ministers of Infrastructure and Transport Matteo Salvini, of the Environment and Energy Security Gilberto Pichetto Fratin, for Civil Protection and Marine Policies Nello Musumeci, for European Affairs, the South , Cohesion Policies and the Pnrr Raffaele Fitto, Agriculture, Food Sovereignty and Forestry Francesco Lollobrigida and Regional Affairs and Autonomies Roberto Calderoli,

The decree introduces specific measures aimed at increasing the resilience of water systems to climate change and reducing the dispersion of water resources. Among other things, the following are envisaged: a simplified regime for the procedures for the design and construction of water infrastructures which refers to the Pnrr model; the increase in the useful volumes of the reservoirs; the possibility of freely creating rainwater collection tanks for agricultural use within a set maximum volume; the reuse of purified wastewater for irrigation; the introduction of considerable simplifications in the construction of desalination plants.

These measures will be immediately implemented also thanks to the governance system outlined, which provides forestablishment of the control room with the task of carrying out, within 30 days, a survey of the works and interventions of urgent realization to face, in the short term, the water crisis and, among these, those likely to be carried out by the extraordinary national Commissioner. In the event of delays or other critical issues in the implementation of individual infrastructural interventions in the water sector, the Control Room activates procedures aimed at overcoming the delays or critical issues that have emerged and can also appoint individual ad acta Commissioners.

The decree also provides for the appointment of an extraordinary national Commissioner for water scarcity, who will remain in office until 31 December 2023 and may be extended until 31 December 2024. The Commissioner will carry out, as a matter of urgency, the interventions indicated by the Cabin direction and will carry out further functions, including the regulation of the volumes and capacities of the reservoirs, the verification and coordination of the adoption, by the regions, of the measures envisaged to rationalize consumption and eliminate waste, the verification and monitoring of the authorization process of the reservoir management projects aimed at deshing and mud removal operations, the identification of the dams for which the adoption of interventions for the removal of sediments accumulated in the reservoirs is necessary and urgent, the reconnaissance of the reservoirs outside temporary exercise to be financed within the resources of the “Fund for the improvement of safety and management of reservoirs”.

In the event of persistent inertia in the implementation of the interventions and measures listed by the responsible subjects, the Commissioner may be indicated by the President of the Council of Ministers, following a resolution by the Council of Ministers and having heard the defaulting subject, in order to adopt, in substitutive way, the necessary deeds or provisions or to carry out the projects and interventions.