Catchment water quality management plans are central to the Department of Water Affairs and Forestry's (DWAF) water quality management strategy. Catchment plans provide a coherent framework to ensure that fitness for use is achieved at catchment level.

This paper describes DWAF's perspective on and approach to key aspects associated with the development and implementation of catchment water quality management plans. It expands on the role and composition of a catchment water quality management plan; the guiding principles inherent to the development of a management plan; the key success factors ensuring implementability; key aspects associated with the development of the plan, public participation, project structure, water users and setting water quality objectives and various aspects in DWAF's approach for future consideration.