Working Together Consultation

Closes 20 Dec 2024

Opened 29 May 2024


       Are you interested in Wales’s water?

                 Help us shape its future!


We need to make sure we engage the right people at the right time in the right way about plans for water in Wales. Let us know who is interested in this work, how we can engage and keep you informed.

We welcome everyone’s views so please share this public consultation with others.

To view the page in Welsh, please click here.

Iimage showing a beach with waves viewed from a cliff


River Basin Management Plans Working Together Consultation

NRW’s River Basin Management Plans (RBMPs) set out what we know about our rivers, lakes, canals, ground waters, estuaries and coastal waters, what we need to do to improve them and how we will do this. For more information on this and our previous publications please refer to our website - Natural Resources Wales / River basin management plans.

We follow the steps set out below to update the plans every six years, as required under the Water Framework Directive Regulations. We welcome feedback on how we carry out these steps and will aim to incorporate this into our approach.  


A picture showing a timeline from 2024 to 2027 showing the steps required to update RBMPs

Working Together Consultation

This consultation, known as Working Together, aims to let everyone know what we are doing, when and why. It helps us to find out who wants to be engaged in the process

Challenges and Choices Consultation

The next step is the Challenges and Choices consultation, this is due to start in June 2025. We will share what we know and learn from others to help us identify the significant water management issues. We will consult on what can be done about them and who can help us to do this.

Draft Updated RBMPs Consultation

The final consultations are on the draft updated RBMPs, we expect this consultation to open in June 2026. In the draft plans will classify water bodies and set objectives for water body status to 2033. We will set out measures to address issues and how these measures will be delivered at a local scale. You will have the opportunity to respond to a consultation on these draft plans including their level of ambition for the water environment and commitment to deliver.

Final RBMPs

By December 2027 we aim for the final RBMPs to be approved by Ministers and to be published.  These set the direction for how we will manage, protect and improve our water environment in Wales to 2033.

Strategic Environmental Assessment and Habitats Regulations Assessment

A Strategic Environmental Assessment and Habitats Regulations Assessment will be undertaken alongside the RBMP to influence and inform its development. These are a legal requirement and are undertaken to assess whether our proposals for improving the water environment could have intended or unintended consequences for people or the wider environment.


Image showing a lake with forested hills in the background and common reed in the foreground


Our Approach

We want RBMPs to be accessible and useful to everyone. Previously we published our RBMPs on our website as PDF documents. We also set out the measures we will use to improve our waters and maps of the information on Water Watch Wales.

We think RBMPs should be presented more visually, on maps where we can. We want to show information at a Wales level as well as individual water bodies. We want to link up with other information including Bathing Waters, Shellfish Waters, drinking water supply areas and peatlands.

We will publish the RBMPs in line with NRW’s digital accessibility requirements and that helps our stakeholders to find information easily. Any changes in approach will need to align with legal requirements of Water Framework Directive Regulations. These require us to do an economic assessment and present opportunities for interventions to meet the desired outcomes.

How will we work together?

Public interest in our waters has intensified in recent years, with issues such as pollution and drought making the headlines. We want to embrace this and work with everyone, including those we haven’t worked with before. The formal process outlined above is not the only way in which you can engage with us.

We will work with national and local groups and to work closely with other stakeholders. This includes conservation, agriculture, business, recreation, local and regional government, angling, water industry, energy, navigation, shellfish fisheries, transport, mining and academic institutions.  We welcome input from new organisations and individuals to enable us to learn from everyone's experiences and knowledge about our waters.

Links to plans and strategies

We will try to ensure other relevant plans and strategies both local and national are considered in our RBMP review. More details on this are in the table below.  We will continue to engage with the owners of relevant plans and strategies on all the steps of our process.



Plan/ Strategy Lead Body

Flooding and coastal erosion

National Flood and Coastal Erosion Risk Management Strategy
Welsh Government
  Flood Risk Management Plan Natural Resources Wales
  Shoreline Management Plans Coastal Groups (Local Authority led)
  Local Flood Risk Management Strategies Local Authorities
  National Habitat Creation Programme Natural Resources Wales
Climate Change
Climate Change Strategy for Wales (2010)
Welsh Government
  Low Carbon Delivery Plan Net Zero Wales Welsh Government
  The UK Climate Change Risk Assessment Evidence and Government Reports (CCRA4) UK Committee on Climate Change Adaptation Subgroup
  The UK National Adaptation Programme 2013 UK Government
The UK National Adaptation Strategy and Adaptation Plan
Government's Climate Change Committee 
Water Policy Water Strategy for Wales and associated Action Plan Welsh Government
Water Industry Water Resource Management Plans Water Comapanies
  Drought Plans Water Companies
  Water Company Business Plans Water Companies
  Drainage and Wastewater Managment Plans Water Companies
  Wales Storm Overflow Roadmap Better River Quality Task Force
Biodiversity Nature Recovery Action Plan Welsh Government
  Special Areas of Conservation (SAC)/ Special Protection Area (SPA) core management plans Natural Resources Wales
First Minister Action Plan for SAC Rivers
Welsh Government
  Nutrient Management Plans for SAC Rivers Nutrient Management Boards
  Nature Networks Programme Welsh Government
  National Peatlands Action Programme Welsh Government
  LIFE + Natura 2000 Project Thematic Plans and Prioritised Improvements Plans (PIPs) Natural Resources Wales
  Local Nature Partnership Nature Recovery Action Plans/Local Biodiversity Partnership Action Plans Local Authorities
Invasive Non-Native Species (INNS)
The Great Britain Invasive Non-Native Species Strategy
Great Britain Non-native Invasive Species Programme Board
Agriculture Sustainable Farming Scheme Welsh Government
Forestry National Forest for Wales Welsh Government
  Woodlands for Wales Strategy Welsh Government
  Forest Resource Plan Natural Resources Wales
Recreation Rights of Way Improvement Plans Local Authorities
National Parks & Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB)
National Park Management Plans
National Park Authority
  AONB Management Plans Local Authorities
Air Quality
Air Quality Action Plans
Local Authorities
Marine Welsh National Marine Plan Welsh Government
  Marine Strategy Framework Directive Programme of Measures Welsh Government
  UK Marine Strategy UK Government
  Welsh Marine Evidence Strategy Welsh Government
  Marine Protected Area (MPA) Network Management Action Plan for Wales Welsh Government
  Marine Area Statement Natural Resources Wales
Chemicals UK National Action Plan for the Sustainable Use of Pesticides (Plant Protection Products) 2013 Welsh Government
  UK Strategic approach to tackle risks from harmful chemicals in UK waters UK Government
National Implementation Plan for the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants 2017
Welsh Government
State of Natural Resources Report (SoNaRR) SoNaRR 2025 Natural Resources Wales
Fisheries Salmon and sea trout plan of action for Wales Natural Resources Wales
Fisheries habitat restoration Plans
Natural Resources Wales
Eel Management Plans
Natural Resources Wales
  Marine and Fisheries Strategic Action Plan Welsh Government
Metal Mines Metal Mine Remediation Programme Natural Resources Wales
Metal Mine Strategy for Wales
Welsh Government
River Restoration River Restoration Programme Natural Resources Wales


Cross-border working

Wales is split into three River Basin Districts (RBD): Western Wales, Dee and Severn, this is shown in the map below.  The boundaries of the Dee and Severn RBD cross into England. We work with the Environment Agency on these RBMPs. NRW lead on the consultations and updated RBMPs for Western Wales and Dee, the Environment Agency lead on the Severn.

The Environment Agency’s Working Together consultation is due to open later this year, we will include the web link on this page when available.  

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How to respond?

Please complete the online survey by clicking on the link below.  A preview of the questions can be found here.

If you are unable to complete the online consultation and wish to complete this consultation on paper email us on or call 0300 065 3000.

Consultation Responses

A summary of the responses to this consultation will be included in our Challenges and Choices Consultation.




Give us your views


  • All Areas


  • Fly-fishing
  • Cockles
  • Newport Green and Safe Spaces
  • Rivers
  • Flooding
  • Llifogydd
  • Community Volunteers
  • Gwirfoddolwyr Cymunedol
  • marine developers
  • marine planners
  • Network Completion Project Task and Finish Group
  • South West Stakeholder group
  • Citizens
  • National Access Forum
  • Gwent
  • citizens
  • water companies
  • NFU
  • DCWW
  • Anglers
  • Coal Authority
  • Mine recovery specialists
  • Arbenigwyr adfer mwyngloddiau
  • Metal mines
  • Mwyngloddiau metel
  • Coastal Group Members


  • WFD
  • water framework directive
  • water planning
  • Dee
  • river basin planning