A study commissioned by the Federal Environment Agency warns of water shortages along the Spree after the coal phase-out in Lusatia. Lignite mining has artificially increased the flow of water, but the phase-out will drastically change the water balance. In dry summer months, the Spree could locally carry up to 75 percent less water, which would have an impact on the Spreewald, lakes, canals and the drinking water supply in Berlin. Measures such as the expansion of reservoirs and pipe systems as well as water conservation are proposed to counteract the water shortage. Transnational cooperation is needed to develop sustainable concepts for water use. Berlin is already working on solutions for drinking water supply.

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