Lakes are water resources which perform unique ecological, recreational and landscape-related functions. Sustaining and enhancing this multi-functional character of lakes while preserving the high quality of lake waters should be the principal objective of lake management. In Poland, we still lack a management strategy that would take into consideration the specifi c nature of lakes.
Audits of the Supreme Audit Offi ce (NIK) have demonstrated that the performance of basic tasks stipulated by law and pertaining to the governance of lakes by Regional Water Management Boards and by Marshalls of Voivodships leaves much to be desired. Irregularities and cases of negligence include, inter alia, the widespread practice of barring the public access to the lakes, lawless construction, and the lack of a current water cadastre. In the draft of a new Water Law, public administration is once again entrusted with the entire governance of inland waters. In the draft of a new Water Law, public administration is once again entrusted with the entire governance of inland waters. Meanwhile, the experience of other countries suggests that decentralization and participation of other interested parties, including community and non-government organizations, makes lake management more effi cient.
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