A federal action plan to minimise the risk of water pollution and help to ensure the sustainable use of plant protection products is to be drafted. Working on behalf of the Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN), EBP has compiled a catalogue and assessment of measures designed to reduce the entry of plant protection products in the aquatic Environment.
In May 2014, the Swiss Federal Council commissioned the Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research to join forces with the Federal Department of the Environment, Transport, Energy and Communications to draft an action plan by the end of 2016 for reducing the risk of water pollution and ensuring a more sustainable use of plant protection products. The aim of this action plan is to harmonise and ensure the efficient implementation of the measures that will be necessary to reduce the volume of plant protection products that enter the aquatic environment.
Working on behalf of the Water Division of the Federal Office for the Environment, EBP has drafted a comprehensive catalogue of measures that can be implemented at the source to help reduce the volume of plant protection products that enter the aquatic environment. The catalogue also offers a description of federal action plans introduced by four members of the European Union (Germany, France, Denmark, and the Netherlands) as well as the methods used by these countries to measure the success of their plans.
The catalogue of measures is based on a systematic evaluation of the relevant literature, various reports and instructional materials, as well as the four above-mentioned federal action plans. The catalogue encompasses technological, regulatory and organisational measures, and also takes account of various existing, obsolete and innovative measures that have been implemented in Switzerland. The measures are broken down into nine separate categories. The categories pertain, for instance, product market approval, product use, means of entering the aquatic environment, cognitive factors and current research findings. A total of 85 detailed measures were compiled.
The extensive fact-finding report is to serve as a basis for the drafting of the PPP action plan in Switzerland.