German economy vulnerable to global water scarcity, WWF warns

Water is scarce but it continues to be wasted excessively in many industrial states, warns a new study by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), predicting that a global conflict over water resources could bring billions in losses for the German market. EurActiv Germany reports.

Tomatoes from Spain, textiles from India, metals from South Africa, roses from Kenya; every year, Germany imports massive amounts of goods from around the world that would not be available without considerable water resources.

But water is becoming an increasingly scarce global resource. In many countries, it has become more and more difficult to supply the population with adequate drinking water and irrigation for crops.

Besides export-reliant countries with critical water resources, the effects of the shortage can be devastating for others as well.

According to the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), the worldwide water shortage will also impact industrialised European countries like Germany.

If German imports are cut off due to water shortages in producer states, German companies would be hard hit, said a WWF study released on Wednesday (27 August).

Philip Wagnitz, one of the authors of the study, said many German economic sectors are both responsible for and affected by the international water crisis, from the food sector to the auto and fashion industries.

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