In the Mediterranean – partly the highest alert level due to winter drought


According to the European Earth observation program Copernicus, drought has persisted in the Mediterranean in recent winter months, leading to some water restrictions and drought crises. The highest alert level was reached in 2.8 percent of the area.

According to data from the European Drought Observatory (EDO), more than 45 percent of southern Europe suffered from dry soils in the first ten days of February. According to Copernicus, a quarter of all of Europe and North Africa are experiencing drought. The winter months brought less precipitation than average in the region. The situation has deteriorated since the end of January, although slightly better than last year, when 31.3 percent of the area was affected by drought.

Warmest January since measurements began
The situation is particularly bad in southern Italy, Spain, Algeria, Tunisia and northern Morocco. The drought is accompanied by temperatures that are above the usual average. According to Copernicus, last January was the warmest since measurements began.

The regional president of the Spanish region of Catalonia, Pere Aragonès, spoke of a “drought of the century”. A state of emergency was declared and water restrictions were imposed. The Italian island of Sicily declared a drought crisis in early February. Morocco, where temperatures recently rose to 37 degrees Celsius, is experiencing its sixth consecutive year of drought.

February will probably not bring any improvement
The EDO has predicted above-average temperatures for Europe and the Mediterranean for spring 2024. At the same time, less snow is expected in the coming months in the mountain ranges responsible for filling the rivers.

Source: Krone


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