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Title: Public policies as strategic asset management enablers: the case of Portugal
Authors: Alegre, H.
Amaral, R.
Brito, R.
Baptista, J. M.
Keywords: Public policies water service, utility, asset management, policy-maker, portugal
Issue Date: 23-Sep-2019
Publisher: Lesam /PI 2019, IWA
Abstract: Urban water supply, wastewater and storm water services (globally, water services) are essential to the society. The lack of permanent, safe and respondent services has inevitable consequences on the public health and well-being of the communities, on the economy, and on the environment. Goal 6 of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) recognises this, and failing to meet it necessarily affects the accomplishment of many of the other SDGs. Water service provision depends on expensive and long-lasting physical assets. Managing them strategically (e.g., according to the international standards on asset management, series ISO 55x and to the IWA recommendations) is therefore fundamental for sustainable societies. Countries need to have sound public policies that enable asset management, and Portugal is a paradigmatic case. This paper presents the key elements of an enabling public policy for water, using the case of Portugal to exemplify possible implementation solutions. It elaborates on key goals for governments, on the importance of a coherent public policy to meet them, on the elements a sound public policy should consider, on how this links to asset management, and presents how Portugal implemented this process, addressing challenges to overcome.
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