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Parbeszed: Government policy on battery plants endangering drinking water supply

The government's policy of attracting battery plants to Hungary will end up endangering the country's supply of drinking water, the opposition Parbeszed-Greens told a press conference on Friday.

Some 95 percent of Hungary’s water supply flows through the country, while the domestic water supply, renewed mostly from rainfall, is the second lowest in the European Union, the party’s parliamentary group leader Timea Szabo said.

According to the 2019 report on national water strategy, 112 cubic kilometres of water flows into Hungary each year, while 5-7 cubic kilometres more than that flows out, Szabo said. “Hungary’s annual water balance is constantly negative,” she said.

The government has neglected to build water reservoirs or reform water management in any way to address the situation, she said. Hungary lacks gravity drainage reservoirs or water-saving irrigation systems, and its water management experts had “fled the water management institutions forced under the purview of a ruined and politicised interior ministry,” she said.

Prime Minister Viktor Orban and his government “lies” when they say Hungary’s water supply is safe, she said. “That is not true even without battery plants”, and the plants will put the water supplies under even greater strain, she added.

Parbeszed is working to stop the construction of further plants, she said. The party will expect immediate answers on issues raised by Orban’s speech in parliament on Monday, and wants to know when the government will introduce a water management economy that ensures drinking water and agriculture for further generations, she said.

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