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Too much nitrate, too many herbicides – the German waters are not well. This is mainly due to fertilizers that arrive in rivers and lakes.

Water quality: Three out of four lakes are bad

Too much nitrate, too many herbicides – the German waters are not well. This is mainly due to fertilizers that arrive in rivers and lakes.

Water quality: Three out of four lakes are bad

Only one in four seas in Germany is ecologically in good condition – in most water quality is of concern. This is a response from federal government to a question by Green Bundestag MEP Steffi Lemke, on which newspapers of Spark Media Group first reported. According to EU criteria, only 24 per cent of water measured values are considered to be good.

Almost three-quarters of lakes are considered by experts in a mediocre to poor condition. Only 2.3 percent could be rated as very good. The deficiencies are caused by a surplus of fertilizers flowing into water.

However, values say nothing about ir quality as bathing water, it is only about nature conservation in request and replies of Government.

In watercourses it looks hardly better: Only 13 percent is good. According to federal government, animals lack natural habitats, waters are not continuous enough, and re is a lack of protection for fish on buildings, such as hydroelectric power stations.

Similar problems can be seen in groundwater: 18 percent of measuring points exceed limit of 50 milligrams per liter of nitrate. The values for plant protection products are too high at five percent. Also noticeable are fragile ecosystems in Germany, which include, for example, Pagans and Moors: Although trend is downward, values of nitrogen load are too high on almost 70 percent of land.

The EU Water Framework Directive obliges all Member States to bring ir waters into good condition by 2027 at latest. Germany has committed itself to this in a national biodiversity strategy.

It was "alarming that three quarters of our lakes are in a moderate to poor ecological state," said Green politician Lemke. Typical fish and plants would no longer have a habitat. These waters suffered from manure of agriculture. "The high nutrient content allows algae to grow excessively and thus deserted lakes."

It called on federal government to bring about a "turnaround in protection of species". A agricultural turn is urgently needed: less slurry in fields, fewer toxins. Biodiversity must become "a cross-cutting task" of all departments. Environmentalists have been drawing attention for a long time to fact that an above-average number of birds and insects die.

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