Carla De-Vizzi and Luisa Ita
Nature is desperate for water. It has hardly rained in weeks. The soil has dried up completely, there is hardly any water in the rivers, and the army blows the water into the Alps. Instead of a deep blue color, some waters have a dreary, muddy brown color.
Animal residents of the Giessenpark recreation area in Bad Ragaz SG are also suffering. Paul Bolhalder (69) of Bad Ragaz is responsible for cleaning up the park around the lake and keeping things clean seven days a week. The current situation makes him sad. “I don’t understand it at all. Our beautiful Gisensei now looks like a cloaca. Only the golf course can draw in full,” said the pensioner to Blick.
In fact, the greens of the golf course glow in the lush green right next to the recreation area. The pensioner Bolhalder says that the meadows of the golf club Bad Ragaz are watered every day. In addition, the square also houses several small ponds with crystal-clear water and fountains. And all this while the Giessensee dries up.
Fisheries supervisor Siggy Jagger (75) also complains about Giesensi’s “depressed” condition: “The biggest problem is that there is no water supply anymore,” Jagger told Blick. All inflows and outflows are blocked by mud. The result: a lake that looks like a pond.
“Mud is poisonous”
The optics are only a minor evil. Worse: “The sludge is poisonous and destroys entire organisms. The modder needs to be removed immediately,” says pensioner Bolhalder. Although it will cost you money. The local municipality responsible for Bad Ragaz knows about it. I didn’t want to hear anything. “We have already drawn your attention to the precarious state of the lake several times. But nothing is done.”
All of Bolhalder and Jagger’s proposals for a solution seeped into the mud. However, as fisheries observers say, these are relatively easy to implement: “You can easily pump water from the Tamina, a south-southwest tributary of the Rhine, or from the Rhine itself into the Giessensee.”
The local church has denied any allegations.
Bad Ragaz confirms the current very low water level in the local community Giessensee. However, the authority denies that there is any restraint in the water: “neither the inlet nor outflow is silted up,” writes local community clerk Ron Ethacombat (35) when asked by Blick. In addition, the sludge is not toxic. According to Ethacombat, there is “no reason” for the situation in Lake Giesen to improve.
One is in constant contact with St. Gallen’s office for nature, hunting and fishing. However, since many bodies of water in Switzerland are currently facing water shortages, the pumping of water is considered “not accommodating”. The golf course is so well irrigated because it has its own groundwater pumping station.
He’s running out of water: Here Danielle Frey Shows Her Field That’s Too Dry,01:23,
There is also a red alert in the canton of Aargau. Lettuce still glows green in the sun on the field of Daniel Frey (54) at Muselirau AG. But the vegetable grower has lines of deep concern on his forehead: “The lettuce was planted three weeks ago and is already underdeveloped, some seedlings even have yellow leaves. It may not be in the early stages yet.”
The ground is right next to a small stream, Suhre. But since the beginning of the week, as per the instructions of the Canton of Aargau, the company is no longer able to pump water from it for irrigation, the water level is also very low due to the ongoing heat.
“Then it’s over and that’s off”
When asked about the fact that the golf course at Oberentfelden AG, just a few kilometers away, is still watering its greens, according to a report by regional TV station Tele M1, Frey says: “I think That people usually have to think about their priorities. Do we really have to fill the pool in the backyard and wash the car every Saturday? Or will we not use our water for food production?”
Because his salad is almost certain to die now. “Without water, it will be vegetated for about a week, but not really grow further,” explains Frey. “Then it’s over and he’s off – and we have salad.” There are already ways to prevent this: “In other areas, for example, we can use hydrants. There we can get drinking water with punctuality and then it is billed through a meter.»
Where does the expensive tank truck have to come from?
This is not possible in Muselirou: “There are no hydrants here far and wide, because the populated area is quite far away.” That would still clarify whether a line could be drawn.
Otherwise the tanker truck option would still be there: “But with this, the cost of irrigation is about 5,000 francs each. If we have to do it several times over a period of several weeks, it no longer pays off.”
A tanker would be an option only if you have the possibility of rain and then only have to resort to it once. Otherwise the salad will go to the dogs, for better or worse, Frey says sadly: “It hurts, because there’s already a lot of work involved.”
After all: Switzerland can expect some water. It is likely to start raining early next week. However, at the moment there is a great thirst – everything is only on the green area on the golf course.