Clean water contributes to a healthy life. For instance, clean drinking water contributes to a healthy diet. In the Netherlands, tap water is so clean of such high quality that you can actually drink it straight from the tap without worrying about quality or safety. RIVMNational Institute for Public Health and the Environment works closely together with drinking water companies and government authorities to provide clean, healthy drinking water for everyone.

The quality of drinking water in the Netherlands is excellent. The Netherlands sources its drinking water from groundwater and from surface water. The drinking water companies purify water from these sources, producing drinking water that complies with statutory requirements. These vital institutions also monitor the quality of drinking water from source to tap. RIVMNational Institute for Public Health and the Environment is the Dutch government’s knowledge centre for our supply of drinking water. Working in close collaboration with the government and the drinking water companies, RIVM helps to ensure that clean drinking water comes out of household taps.

Our knowledge of micro-organisms, radiation, toxicology, epidemiology, hydrology, chemistry and CBRN protection is primarily used to safeguard the supply, sources and quality of our drinking water.

In addition, the drinking water team at RIVM has access to a strong national knowledge network, including water boards, drinking water companies, KWR (the knowledge institute of the drinking water companies), and KIWA (certification institute for drinking water materials). Moreover, the team also has access to a vast international network, including the World Health Organization (RIVM is the Collaborating Centre for Risk Assessment of Pathogens in Food and Water), the EU (for implementation and development of the EU  Drinking Water Directive), and RegNet and the WHO International Network of Drinking-water Regulators.

RIVM is also available to respond to disasters involving drinking water or the supply of drinking water. For that purpose, RIVM has access to a state-of-the-art laboratory infrastructure through its own facilities and its extended network.

  • The Milieuongevallendienst (the MOD is the branch of the Environmental Assessment Team which only operates in the Netherlands) has been placed under the auspices of RIVM. The MOD can be alerted in the event of an incident involving chemical or biological substances.
  • In the event of complex incidents in the Netherlands in the field of environment and drinking water, RIVM collaborates with other knowledge institutes within the Crisis Expert Team for the Environment and Drinking Water (CET-md).