Climate change in Bavaria: water quality and sustainable agriculture
After heavy rainfall in Bavaria's streams, the swept-in soil not only clogs the gravelly habitat of many aquatic animals, it also carries along large amounts of nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus, which were intended to fertilize meadows and farmland. Instead, these nutrients promote the growth of algae and aquatic plants in the stream - weeding and lack of oxygen at the river bottom are the consequences.
With climate change, the problem is exacerbated in two ways: on the one hand, the nutrients applied to fields and meadows are more poorly absorbed by the plants in dry phases; on the other hand, more frequent heavy rains are likely to flood the fertilized soil.
What can be done to keep yields in agriculture as stable as possible in the future and to reduce the nutrient load in waters? In this subproject, climate forecasts for Bavaria are used to investigate how alternative agricultural production measures impact crop yields and nutrient loads in selected river basins.