Researchers nowadays talk about climate change as an obvious fact, but most people do not experience anything of it, except for the warmer summers and the snowless winters. A Hungarian researcher from Debrecen explained how dangerous the current processes are for everybody living in Hungary because they can result in the desertification of large territories.
Valasz Online did a long interview with Balázs András Lukács, researcher of the Centre for Ecological Research of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences Centre of Excellence. He said that regarding the Hungarian water supply, a new notion has to be introduced known until now only in Mediterranean countries: temporary water. These are waters that do not exist throughout the whole year. They did not exist in Hungary 6 years ago; however, today,
there are at least 37 streams in the country that are only temporarily filled with water.
Furthermore, thanks to the regulation of the River Tisza, the level of the groundwater is sinking in the Hungarian Great Plain, because of which large areas of soil dry out. That means that, soon, they will not be able to produce anything for the Hungarian agriculture. And this is how, in the end, the Hungarian Great Plain would become a desert in Central Europe.
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The other very problematic factor in this respect is agriculture: the intensive cultivation of the land and the constant use of fertilisers. Mr Lénárd says that in agriculture, local interests always override not only regional but also national interests. For example, after a heavy rain, everybody is interested in getting rid of the huge amount of water that came down. However, they forget that
the water should be collected to help them irrigate in the dry periods of the year.
He added that angling also harms the natural balance since lake owners bring non-indigenous species and are interested only in profit, so they do not pay attention to preserving the sensitive balance of their lakes. The result is unhealthy waters in which fish are also unhealthy. Mr Lénárd says that apart from the Balaton and some quarries, there are no healthy lakes in Hungary.
According to the data of the Centre for Ecological Research, there are
207 bodies of water in Hungary that dry out at least temporarily.
He also said that the drying processes can be very quick, so the next generation in Hungary will probably think about moving to Canada or Sweden if Hungarian authorities do not act as soon as possible. He says that they can still do a lot to avoid the catastrophe in Hungary, but they need the green light from politicians to do so. Furthermore, he thinks that a Ministry for Natural Resources should be established in the country, and
nature should be first
when somebody thinks about convincing foreign investors and foreign capital to come to Hungary.