5. European Matters
Aiste and Christophe talks about some of the environmental problems in Europe.


Christophe: OK, Aiste, we're going to talk about environmental issues in Europe. So, does Lithuania have environmental issues?
Aiste: Oh, actually were are facing kind of a big problem. The Baltic Sea that's beside Lithuania. You know three Baltic countries: Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, together with Scandinavian and Denmark are close to the Baltic Sea that's very isolated and almost has no contact with the ocean and because of that it functions almost like a lake so it means the oxygen can't really get into it and there are a lot of algae growing and the eutrophication and together pollution as well as nutrients increase due to the factories that are around the places where people live are causing a lot of problems in Baltic Sea.
Christophe: Eutrophication? What does that mean?
Aiste: Eutrophication is actually a process when due to the increase of nitrates and other organic materials, a lot of algae starts growing in the sea, and therefore it deprives the sea of oxygen and once it deprives the seas of oxygen, no more fish can live in the sea and they start dying out. Therefore the sea smells with kind of sulphur - strange smell - and it's a huge problem because the biodiversity and the fish and the in the sea decreases.
Christophe: Wow! That sounds horrible.
Aiste: What about Belgium? Do you have any problems in Belgium due to the environment?
Christophe: Well, first of all we have a lot of people living in a very small country. I think we have around four hundred people each square kilometer, so it means that there are too many people in my country. Everything is full of houses, so there's almost no forest any more. There's a real huge problem of deforestation. The second problem is that we have a lot of rivers that are polluted. We have many factories and they're polluting our rivers because we have a lot rivers in Belgium. Remember, it is raining there a lot of times and there just dumping all their stuff in the river so this causes rivers that have no fish anymore, or where children cannot swim in anymore, so that's a very, very huge problem in Belgium and we're trying to solve that now.

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