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LMP turns to president over ‘water crisis’

Opposition LMP has said it is turning to President Katalin Novak with the request that she facilitate cooperation with the government on addressing the issues of increasingly long droughts, dried-up lakes and water-related problems faced by farmers in Hungary.

Laszlo Lorant Keresztes, the head of parliament’s sustainable development committee, told a press conference on Wednesday that he had sent an open letter to the president asking her to take steps to allow scientists and representatives of professional and civil groups to hold talks with government officials.

Keresztes said the government had failed to address Hungary’s “water crisis” for over a decade, arguing that only 5 percent of the necessary funding had been earmarked for water management in both this year’s and next year’s budgets.

Priority is given to making the water’s passage as quick as possible instead of retaining it, even though 95 percent of Hungary’s water resources flow in from and out to other countries, Keresztes said. He said the government had failed to address the issue of more water flowing out of the country than the amount that comes in.

The government’s “bad policies” have pushed the country’s public water works to the brink of collapse, Keresztes said, insisting that the government was incapable of protecting Hungary’s water base. At the same time, it supports heavily water-intensive investment projects like battery production, he added.

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