Half of Europe affected by severe drought

Almost half of Europe is affected by drought. This is according to a report by the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre. According to the report, by August 10, 47 percent of the European territory had reached a drought warning level. For 17 percent of the regions surveyed, the alert level applies, in which vegetation and crops are severely weakened due to a lack of water.

According to the report, conditions are deteriorating especially in the regions that already faced drought in the spring of 2022, such as Northern Italy, southeastern France and some areas in Hungary and Romania.

The rainfall of mid-August may have improved the condition, but “in some regions, the accompanying thunderstorms caused damage and losses, perhaps limiting the beneficial effects of the precipitation”.

The researchers also expect it to be warmer and drier than usual in the western Mediterranean area until november. Parts of Spain and Portugal may face drought warning levels until then.

In most of Europe, “almost normal conditions ” are expected from August to October. “That may not be enough to fully overcome the accumulated (precipitation)deficit of more than six months, but it will alleviate critical conditions in many areas,” it said.

The drought has also significantly reduced the harvest of the summer crops. Corn, soybeans and sunflowers are the hardest hit, the researchers say.

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