ZAGREB, March 23 (Hina) – The Hrvatske Vode water management company observed World Water Day at Plitvice Lakes National Park on Friday under the motto “Leaving no one behind – Water for all.”
Environment Protection and Energy Minister Tomislav Coric said Croatia had large water reserves, ranking among the richest European and world countries, and that this richness in water should be protected and used rationally.
Coric said Croatia had invested HRK 100 million in programmes to prevent the loss of drinking water in supply systems. “Water losses in Croatia are about 50% on average. We are rebuilding the network to bring to losses to an acceptable degree, which is being done in parallel with the construction of new agglomeration systems.”
He said Croatia was doing its best to make water available to all and enable every citizen to connect to the water supply system. Ninety-four percent of citizens have this option now and 86% are connected, he added.
“In order to protect the environment, it’s necessary to expand public drainage systems with treatment plants as 53% of citizens are currently connected to sewers,” Coric said, adding that drinking water, as one of the fundamental human rights, would be ensured on the islands and in remote rural areas.
Hrvatske Vode director general Zoran Djurovic said Croatia must treat water rationally as in some areas losses were 70 or 90% and hundreds of millions of kuna was spent annually to repair the water supply network.
He said work was underway on a Plitvice Lakes water agglomeration project worth HRK 300 million, of which HRK 210 million is expected to come from the EU Cohesion Fund.
(EUR 1 = HRK 7.4)