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Drought in Poland. Masurian lake Roś disappears in the eyes. “You can see the difference”

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Water “disappears” from the Masurian Lake Roś. This can have serious consequences not only for tourism but also for the environment.

As TVN24 reporter Adrian Zaborowski explained, the lower water level in Masurian lakes is clearly visible. This is confirmed by the statistics provided by the Institute of Meteorology and Water Management. In July, the water level in many reservoirs is 20-30 centimeters lower than in September 2022, the driest month of last year.

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Environmental and economic effects

A particularly large loss of water was recorded on Lake Roś. At the Maldanin station, the water level in September 2022 was 93 centimeters. Currently, it is only 66 cm. A very low water level was also recorded on the Pisa River – 143 cm compared to last year’s 173 cm.

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– You can see the difference in statistics, but also with the naked eye – added Zaborowski. – It affects nature, it also affects tourism and sailing.

As Krzysztof Kornaś, Commander of the Masurian Rescue Service, explained in an interview with TVN24, the low water level can be a danger. On Lake Śniardwy, stones lying on the bottom pose a threat – after the water is gone, they are close enough to the surface that small boats can catch on them. The low water level also has a significant impact on the environment.

– If the reed is submerged to a certain depth and the water falls, then its larger elements are above the surface, the wind can lay it down, break it – said the rescuer. – Animals live there, these animals also built nests. (…) If someone built a nest under water, it may turn out that he has to move to another place.

Low water level in Masurian lakesTVN24

Kornaś added that the Great Masurian Lakes are connected with each other by a system of canals, so a lower water level in one reservoir translates into a lower level in others as well. Lake Roś can dry up completely in places – piers for boats and anglers are located quite above the water. As the lifeguard said, even rainfall may not solve the problem.

– Rain probably won’t do much here, it’s a very complex process. There is no snow, no ice to hold water. There were years when these piers, which today are two meters above the water, were under water in the spring. We are just starting the season (…) and there is very little of this water – he explained.

The piers stand on land

As explained by Joanna Szerenos-Pawilcz, spokeswoman for Polish Waters in Bialystok, the lowering of the water table is caused primarily by hydrological and meteorological drought. It was caused by snowless winters and the lack of significant rainfall in recent years in the spring-summer-autumn periods.

– The downward trend in the level of the water table is noticeable in the (…) system of the Great Masurian Lakes – she said.

An example of the fact that the water in lakes has been decreasing in recent years is also Lake Świątajno near Szczytna. The piers that once stood in the water are now on land. In some places, the water receded by 20-30 meters. As the mayor of Szczytno said Yaroslav Matłach, the Świątajno lake has been shrinking for years.

– No other lake dries up like that. And it is the cleanest lake on Masuria – added.

Types of droughtPAP/EPA, Małgorzata Latos)

Main photo source: TVN24



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