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Report: Czech groundwater pollution worsening

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Prague, Aug 21 (CTK) – The quality of groundwater worsened last year as against the previous years as experts found the values exceeding the permitted limits in some of the observed substances in 86.8 percent of the monitored wells and springs, the annual report on the state of Czech water management said.

One of the causes is the cultivation of rapeseed and maize along with those types of pesticides which leak into the groundwater easier than those associated with the cultivation of cereals, the report for 2016, approved by the government on Monday, said.

Last year, experts from the Czech Hydrometeorological Institute (CHMU) examined 675 wells and springs.

They were exploring the presence of 249 pollutants.

They detected the values over the set limits for groundwater for at least one of the substances in 86.8 percent of the examined places. A year ago, it was only in 82.1 percent of them and in 2014 in 83.8 percent.

“The increase appeared not only in shallow wells, but much more in the pollution of less affected springs and deep boreholes,” the report said.

“This summary evaluation warns of the fact that there is certainly no lowering of the number of polluted groundwater sites within the observed network of CHMU places,” it added.

The report focuses on the pesticides in great detail. Their growing use is coupled with a rising risk of contamination of the groundwater.

It is mainly threatened by the pesticides for the plants used for the biofuel, the report said.

“The promotion of ‘renewable sources’ as an ecological alternative to usual sources brings about a considerable contamination of the groundwater,” the report said.

“There is still the question of whether this strategy is really an ecological alternative and whether it is sustainable,” it added.

The annual report on the state of Czech water management is drafted by the agriculture and environment ministers, describing the water treatment, pollution, the situation of the water flows and the state of the sewerage and waste water discharge.

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