October 6, 2022

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Vice President of the Polish Academy of Sciences: The state of most of Poland's rivers is bad

Vice President of the Polish Academy of Sciences: The state of most of Poland’s rivers is bad

Hydrologist, Vice President of the Polish Academy of Sciences Prof. Bawek Rowinsky, when asked about the state of Polish rivers, admitted that When it comes to water quality, they have “exciting stats”. He referred, inter alia, to based on the data of the Central Bureau of Statistics, the report “Environmental Protection 2021”.

“In the years 2014-2019, 4,585 cubic feet (body of surface water) was evaluated as part of the diagnostic monitoring of rivers, mostly in the Vistula and Odra basins.”- We read in this report.

The hydrologist explained it This does not mean that no watercourse can be entered without health damageBecause many parameters are used to determine its state, not only its chemical or physical state, but also the level of biodiversity.

– The term “bad condition” means that the river does not meet one of dozens of criteria. For example, from a toxicological or chemical point of view, the water quality may be good, but the assessment is also affected, for example, by the hydromorphological conditions of fish migration – the expert explained.

When asked whether the state of Poland’s rivers had improved recently, he emphasized that investments in wastewater treatment plants had contributed to positive change in the past 10 years or so, thanks in large part to funds from the European Union. As a result, waste from many cities ends up in rivers after specialized treatment.

The Vice-President of the Polish Academy of Sciences added that this did not change the fact that the condition of Polish rivers, compared to rivers in Western Europe, and especially in Scandinavia, is still much worse, despite the fact that Poland has the same. European legislation in terms of its standards.

a. Rowinsky pointed to the emergence of new threats in recent years in the form of pollutants unknown or hitherto ignored. Referred to pharmaceuticals and microplastics.

Emphasize that they are not monitored in streams, and can be very dangerous.

a. Rowinsky, when asked about the ecological catastrophe on the Odra River and whether it was possible to count on the fact that the river would quickly “self-clean”, said:

In fact, rivers are unique ecosystems in this respect. However, until we clearly know what contributed to the disaster, it is difficult to say how much time the Odra River will need to clean up. However, he said it wouldn’t be months but years.

He noted that the sooner the river could clean up, the more natural it would be. Favored by the fact that its bottom is unregulated, concrete and the river meanders.

– Unfortunately, Measles is highly transmitted by humans in many places – says the hydrologist.

Climate and Environment Minister Anna Moskwa reported Thursday that the Institute of Inland Fisheries has found rare microorganisms in water samples from the Odra River, the so-called golden algae, the multiplication of which can lead to the release of deadly toxins for fish and mussels. Commenting on these reports, Dr. Iona Jacir, a phytoplankton specialist from the University of Warsaw, noted that studies so far have allowed to determine the action of one group of toxins – but this does not mean that they are not accompanied by another, with unknown effects.

On Tuesday, August 16, Minister Moscow announced the creation of a modern system of permanent monitoring of surface waters, along with a system of early response to crises, failures and possible disasters.

I have taken the decision to allocate 250 million PLN for the complete synchronization and digitization of the surface water quality monitoring system throughout Poland. It will be a network of stations that will contribute to increasing the safety of the population, “- she said on Twitter.

a. Roinsky, when asked about this announcement, welcomed the idea of ​​the Moscow Minister. However, he had a reservation that it was important to involve expert scientists in building this system for it to function effectively. He stressed that the system should not only collect data, but also enable its continuous analysis. He noted that such solutions work on large rivers of Western Europe, for example. on the Rhine.

The system itself won’t do muchIf we did not have a severe punishment system, it would be inevitable – the expert emphasized.

In the opinion of the professor. Rowiński, in Poland, we suffer from a lack of environmental education, and the Poles still lack sensitivity to environmental issues, which is why a lot of dangerous pollutants are dropped by individuals, but also companies.

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