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You are here: Home / The European environment – state and outlook 2010 / Country assessments / Switzerland / Freshwater - Why care? (Switzerland)

Freshwater - Why care? (Switzerland)

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SOER Common environmental theme from Switzerland
Published: 26 Nov 2010 Modified: 23 Nov 2010

Rivers, streams and lakes are vital resources for humans, wildlife and plants. They shape landscapes, transport water and sediment, help to maintain the natural balance of ecosystems and are used for many purposes. However, their capacity to fulfill these functions is impaired by man-made structures, hydropower generation and high-intensity industrial or agricultural use.

Groundwater provides over 80 % of the Swiss drinking water and is therefore given a high protection priority. Groundwater is also a central element in the natural hydrological cycle, feeding the base flow of rivers and sustaining valuable habitats such as spring biotopes, swamps and wetlands.

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The country assessments are the sole responsibility of the EEA member and cooperating countries supported by the EEA through guidance, translation and editing.

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