World Water Day: Water quality must improve!
Federal Environment Agency evaluation of water protection plans
A mere ten percent of Germany’s surface waters achieve “good ecological” status. On World Water Day UBA President Jochen Flasbarth said, “Many rivers, lakes and streams have become generally clean. Oxygen deficiency now occurs only rarely. However, there are still too many rivers and streams in Germany that have been narrowed and straightened. As a result, only a few bodies of water achieve positive ecological quality across the board.” As a consequence of the channeling of rivers and streams, cataracts, gravel banks, flood plains and the natural diversity in habitats are lost. The biocoenoses typical of many water bodies along gravel riverbed courses or in flat water zones have been greatly transformed or have vanished altogether. Yet another problem is phosphorous and nitrogen, which at many sites is still fed into lakes and coastal waters on a large scale. Problems in groundwater also occur, namely due to nitrate used in agriculture.