Water status assessment in Slovenia
The quality of surface water has been gradually improving, but waters are still contaminated with substances that enter the water from various sources (e.g. paved surface and agricultural land, municipal and industrial wastewater, etc.).
In addition to pollution, one of the main causes of the poor status of surface waters are hydromorphological pressures. These include past regulations of riverbeds, improper land use in the water and riparian zone, water and alluvium abstractions , transverse structures, bypass channels and drainage systems.
The quantitative status of groundwater, an important source of potable water, is favourable. Groundwater is mainly contaminated with nitrates from agriculture, especially in north-eastern Slovenia. In order to protect water intended for public drinking water supply from pollution or other pressures that may affect the health compliance or quantity of such water, Slovenia is seeking to expand water protection areas.
Marine waters are typically polluted due to the many activities taking place at sea (maritime transport, fishing, fish and shellfish farming, and recreational boating) and on the coast (tourism, industry, agriculture and urbanisation).
In the past, they were overloaded with nutrients and pollutants, but the situation has improved due to adequate measures. However, marine habitats continue to deteriorate the situation of some species is getting worse, marine waters and the coast are polluted with waste and microplastics, and there is an increase in underwater noise.