Discover the Acea Group online 2019 Sustainability Report

Water Safety Plans (WSPS)

The implementation of a Water Safety Plan (WSP) is required for all water systems pursuant to the Decree of the Ministry of Health of 14.06.2017, in implementation of European Union Directive 2015/1787, which endorsed the WSP methodology developed by the World Health Organization (WHO). The WSP approach is to prevent and reduce the risks inherent in the drinking water service, assessing dangerous events along the entire water supply chain (collection, treatment and distribution to the user meter). The risk is calculated according to the severity and probability of a pollution event or water shortage. Based on this assessment, the following are defined: actions to mitigate risks, monitoring systems, operating procedures under normal and emergency conditions, the water quality control plan, the methods for informing the public and the competent authorities, etc. WSPs must also be constantly updated to take into account plant development, changes in the regulatory environment and climate and environmental changes. Finally, the implementation of WSPs must be carried out according to internationally recognized methodologies developed by the WHO. In Italy, the Istituto Superiore di Sanita (ISS) has introduced WHO guidelines and will therefore have to approve WSPs.

Overall, the implementation of Water Safety Plans will concern the large aqueducts managed by Acea Ato 2 that supply the city of Rome, up to 90% of the population of OTA 2 and more than 200,000 inhabitants of the 45 municipalities of the Provinces of Rieti and Frosinone.

In Acea Ato 2, the first WSP implemented in 2019 concerned the water system fed by the new Grottarossa plant for the purification of water from the Tiber, normally used to supply the network for watering green areas of the city of Rome and Vatican City but immediately available in case of emergency to supply the drinking water network at the service of 350,000 inhabitants of the central areas of Rome. In particular, during the year studies for the areas of protection and influence were presented to the Lazio Region as required under the new Regional Water Protection Plan (PTAR). The concession request was published but has not yet been released.

In the future the network for watering the green areas of the city of Rome and Vatican City will be supplied by the water coming out of the COBIS purification plant. For this purpose, in 2019 the plant underwent upgrading for the implementation of a specific purification treatment120 (see also Water distributed and returned to the environment in the chapter Customers and the community).

Acea Ato 5 identified the first water source to be studied to draft the WSP, and continued the mandatory training organized by the Istituto Superiore di Sanita and the Ministry of Health for the staff who will draw up the Water Safety Plans (WSPs).

In Gori in 2019 the team was formed to prepare the WSPs, and the evaluation of the water system was started.

In 2019 Gesesa, like Acea Ato 5, trained personnel for the Water Safety Plans (WSPs), and started the acquisition of information on water collection sources.

120 A tertiary treatment of double-stage filtration and disinfection with UV rays.