Low water on the Rhine, on the Oder and everywhere. Climate change is showing itself in full force this summer. And hits the sport too. The upcoming Canoe Slalom World Championships in Augsburg are in jeopardy. The Lech has no more water.
Despite the current water shortage, Augsburg wants to make the Canoe Slalom World Championships possible next week with the help of emergency measures. "We are working on dealing with the water shortage," said Mayor Eva Weber.
Training on the competition course was also not possible this Wednesday because of the problems with the insufficient amount of water on the Lech, which feeds the Augsburg Olympic canoe course. A concrete wall provisionally built into a side arm of the ice channel on Tuesday is now supposed to dam up the water enough for the world championship to take place from July 26th to 31st.
The city hopes that training on the ice track will be possible again from Thursday. However, those responsible in the city made it clear that the competition course could possibly no longer be flooded sufficiently if the amount of water on the Lech continued to decrease. Nobody can guarantee that the competitions will take place, said Weber.
Markus Haller, head of the hydraulic engineering department in the Augsburg civil engineering office, explained that "trickery" such as the concrete wall would not get any further if less water was coming in. The amount of water in the Lech has not been as low as it is now for decades, he said.
The city stressed that it could not divert all the water into the canoe course because nature in the city's other streams also needed to be protected. The World Cup participants who have traveled to Augsburg understand the situation and so far the mood has continued to be good.
The world's first canoe slalom stadium was built in Augsburg for the 1972 Summer Olympics. On the occasion of this year's anniversary of the Munich Games, the World Cup is now to take place. In recent years, the Augsburg Olympic Park had therefore been modernized for 21 million euros.