Water Exploitation Index (WEI)
In simple terms, the index shows available water resources in a country or region compared to the amount of water used. An index of over 20 % usually indicates water scarcity. As the graph shows, nine countries are considered;water stressed: Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Germany, Italy, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Malta, Spain, and the United Kingdom (England and Wales). WEI data are available for England and show that the South East and London are especially stressed. This level of information is key in terms of effective adaptation to climate change. By understanding how much water is available in a region, where it is coming from and who uses it, we will be able to build effective local strategies to adapt to climate change.
For references, please go to www.eea.europa.eu/soer or scan the QR code.
This briefing is part of the EEA's report The European Environment - State and Outlook 2015. The EEA is an official agency of the EU, tasked with providing information on Europe's environment.
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