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In the food production process, farmers cultivate the soil, apply fertilizers and pesticides to cropland and meadows, irrigate crops and use veterinary medicines in rearing livestock. These activities have qualitative and quantitative impacts on the country's waterbodies.
Legal requirements in the area of agricultural water protection are specified in various articles of the Water Protection Law:
Agricultural activities are to be guided by the ecological objectives for waterbodies specified in Appendix 1 of the Water Protection Ordinance (WPO): plant and animal communities are to be near-natural and appropriate to the habitat. No potential contaminants are to be allowed to enter waterbodies. Agricultural activities also have to take account of the water quality requirements specified in Appendix 2 of the WPO.
For farmers, the receipt of direct payments is conditional on compliance with the provisions relating to water protection.
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