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Water Law.

Type of law

This Law regulates the complete legal status of waters, water resources and water constructions, water quality and quantity management, protection against harmful effects of water, detailed amelioration and drainage and irrigation related provisions, waste water and discharge issues, special activities for water management, institutional organization of these activities and other issues related to the water and water resource management, use and protection. The principal objectives of water management are: ensuring sufficient quantities of healthy water for human consumption, also for the protection of human health; ensuring the required quantities of water of adequate quality for different economic and personal needs; protection of people and their property from floods and other forms of harmful effects of water; achieving and maintaining the good status of waters for the protection of life and health of people, protection of their properties, and for protection of aquatic and water dependent ecosystems. The achievement of these objectives shall be ensured by preventing direct or indirect effects on the reduction of the quality of water for human consumption or on the pollution of water used for the production of water for human consumption. Water protection aims at: prevent further deterioration, protect and improve the status of aquatic ecosystems and, given the water needs, terrestrial ecosystems and wetlands directly dependent on aquatic ecosystems; promote sustainable water use based on the long-term protection of available water resources; better protect and improve the state of the aquatic environment, by implementing specific measures for controlled and gradual reduction of the discharge, emission and dispersal of dangerous substances from the priority list and the interruption or gradual elimination of the discharge, emission or dispersal of dangerous substances from such list; ensure a gradual reduction of groundwater pollution and prevent their further pollution; and contribute to mitigating the effects of floods and droughts.
The text is divided into sixteen main Chapters and 254 articles. Titles of Chapters are as follows: (I) General provisions; (II) Waters, water goods and water constructions; (III) Water areas; (IV) Water management planning documents; (V) Water protection; (VI) Water use; (VII) Protection against harmful water effects; (VIII) Prohibitions and restrictions to the rights of owners and users of land and special measures to maintain the water regime; (IX) Water documentation; (X) Water acts; (XI) Concessions; (XII) National water Council and Croatian Waters (water agency); (XIII) Special activities for water management needs; (XIV) Surveillance; (XV) Offences; and (XVI) Transitional and final provisions.
Water is a common good and have special protection of the Republic of Croatia (article 8). The list of alignments with European Union directives is in article 2. Water management principles are listed in article 6. Other topics regulated in this Law are water policy related rules as listed in article 7; construction and maintenance of water structures in article 30; detailed provisions on water quality standards (47).
The agricultural inspector performs the tasks of inspecting the implementation of the action programme for protection of waters against pollution caused by nitrates of agricultural origin (article 220). The provisions of this Law shall also apply to: waters of the territorial sea in terms of their chemical status; mineral waters, unless otherwise provided special law in the administrative field of mining; and to geothermal waters, unless otherwise provided by special legislation governing over geothermal waters.
Date of text
Entry into force notes
This Law enters into force eight days after its publication in the Official Gazette.
Publication reference
Official Gazette of the Republic of Croatia 66/2019
Source language


Legislation Amendment
Original title
Zakon o vodama.
Implemented by