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FAOLEX Database

Framework Law

The main law applicable to water resources management, which covers all of the following areas: administration; management, conservation and use of freshwater resources; water rights; waterworks; water supply
Date of original text: 11 May 1994 (2017)

Constitutional provisions

Date of original text: 28 June 1992 (2011)

Right to water: No provisions regarding the right to water.

Natural resources: The natural wealth and resources of Estonia are national riches which must be used economically (Paragraph 5).


Water used for irrigation, forestry and aquaculture
Date of text: 20 April 1994

Water Supply and Sanitation

Provision of water services by public utilities or commercial organizations; water supply for domestic, industrial or other purposes; right to safe and clean drinking water and basic sanitation; quality of piped water; sewerage
Date of original text: 10 February 1999 (2011)
Date of original text: 14 June 1995 (2004)
Date of original text: 14 June 1995 (2002)


The political, social, economic and administrative systems that govern water management and conservation; good practices; good governance; decentralization; water user’s associations
Date of text: 30 June 1994


Waterworks; water supply systems; dams; hydropower systems; irrigation systems
Date of original text: 28 January 2015 (2018)
Date of text: 20 April 1994

Water Resources Management and Water Rights

Ownership and control of water resources; abstraction and diversion of water; allocation and quotas; riparian rights; priority of rights; free water use
Date of original text: 16 February 2011 (2018)

Water and Environment

Water in environmentally-sensitive areas; ‘water demand’ by ecosystems; protection forests; water conservation zones; environmental impact assessment
Date of original text: 28 January 2015 (2018)
Date of original text: 21 April 2004 (2012)

Water Quality and Pollution Control

Control of pollution and quality of freshwater bodies and groundwater; agricultural point and non-point sources of pollution; water quality standards
Date of original text: 10 February 1999 (2011)
Date of original text: 17 October 2001 (2003)
Date of original text: 11 June 2003 (2009)


Freshwater resources located below the surface of the earth; aquifers; groundwater abstraction; well-sinking; boreholes; hydrogeology

Disaster Resilience

Water-related hazards; flood; drought; water shortage; adaptation to climate change; early warning system/emergency intervention system
No legislation available

Transboundary Waters

Transboundary effects; international basin institutions; international agreements; transboundary coordination; transboundary aquifers