Nitrates and green algae - what can be done? (version longue)
For millions of Europeans, the beach is the ultimate holiday destination. That is, except when it is covered with a layer of rotting green slime, giving off lethal fumes that have killed domestic animals and caused serious poisoning in humans. So-called ‘green tides’ of algae, which disfigure some of Europe’s most beautiful beaches, are a clear indicator of nitrate pollution. This problem is often particularly severe during the summer months. The film illustrates the underlying causes of nitrate pollution and the strategies that have been put in place to tackle the problem, whose origins lie in the agricultural sector. Many actions have been implemented in large part thanks to the EU’s Nitrates Directive that aims to protect water quality across Europe. The directive aims to encourage activities directed at preventing nitrates from agricultural sources polluting ground and surface waters and to promote the use of good farming practices.