Dr Ferenc Jordán, the network researcher biologist of the Balaton Limnological Institute, has a gloomy outlook for the Hungarian sea if we do not start taking better care of it. The researcher has some ideas about what should be done in order to avoid the worst possible outcome.
Dr Ferenc Jordán, network researcher biologist and Director of Centre for Ecological Research, Balaton Limnological Institute (BLI) gave an interview to thevip.hu. He believes there is no real union for lake Balaton, which can lead to an ecological catastrophe.
If things do not change, Balaton can become a green, algae-infested swamp.
Universities and research centres are examining the lake on a regular basis, building a collective knowledge about the lake. Still, unfortunately, decisions are not being made with this knowledge in mind. What happens to the lake is primarily determined by a handful of people, investors, politicians, etc. Businesses and building up the shores are more important than what is best for nature.
At BLI, Tihany, researchers are constantly examining the lake from various aspects, and they all come to the same conclusion: the clearing of green spaces (forests, meadows, and reed) should be strictly forbidden. Unfortunately, it is very easy to find loopholes in the current regulations, and the fee for illegal clearing is also minimal, huge investments easily pay them. We also should not let them build up the shores.
New data reveals that the baits used for fishing also pose a severe phosphorus-loading in the lake.
Dredging (a standard remediation method that uses large excavating equipment to remove sediment from the lake and river bottoms) is a controversial method. Some researchers support it, others deem it useless, and the rest believe it does more harm than good. Jordán supports more research to be done to be sure of what is best for the lake. However, he emphasises how hard it is to research with such little data available.
It is also important not to have any constant disturbance in the lake so that the systems can harmonise with each other. The lake’s ecosystem cannot set in if there is continuous interference, contamination, and emergence of new invasive species.
Good news is that there is currently no problem with external contaminants that got into the water. The filtration and decantation systems built in the 1980s and 1990s seem to work well.
Source: www.thevip.hu; www.greatlakesmud.org