Read the full profile
Environment and health
The most important sources of pollution of water are (Länsstyrelsen Blekinge län, 2012):
- diffuse pollution loads from agriculture
- point pollution loads from dischargers of wastewater treatment plants, surface runoff and industrial wastewater in towns and settlements
- transboundary pollution, which consists of pollution loads coming from the neighbouring countries
The quantitative and chemical condition of most of the groundwater basins is good; they are subject to surveillance monitoring. Five groundwater basins have been identified as being at risk, with parts having chloride and sulphate concentrations in excess of the drinking water standard due to natural causes. Monitoring of the problematic quality indicators was launched in these basins in 2013 (MoE, 2014).
The rivers of Lithuania will become particularly vulnerable in summer due to climate change. If the climate change scenarios come true, spring and autumn floods will change greatly. In summer, the water quality will suffer from low flows. The maximum summer temperature of lakes will rise and therefore the processes of eutrophication will accelerate (Climate Adaptation, 2015).
Drainage is usually carried out in conjunction with specific cultural practices: removing shrubs and stumps, gathering stones, ploughing drained swamps and fallow lands. However, sometimes too many shrubs are removed, resulting in an increase in soil erosion. For this reason, serious attention is being paid to environmental protection.