BRUSSELS, March 18 (UPI) -- European environmental officials warned that the continent does not have enough water to sustain current consumption levels.
The European Environment Agency issued a report that concluded the problem now applies to northern Europe as well as the south and cannot be addressed by expanding supplies alone.
"The short-term solution to water scarcity has been to extract ever greater amounts of water from our surface and groundwater assets," said agency director Jacqueline McGlade. "Overexploitation is not sustainable."
The EU Observer said the report took into account the likelihood of more-frequent drought caused by global warming and determined that Europe would have to begin focusing more on reducing water demand and conserving existing supplies rather than relying on looking for new water sources.