Europe Heat Wave: ‘47% of continent is in drought warning conditions’

RH Monitoring Desk, September 13, 2022

The severe drought affecting many regions of Europe since the beginning of the year has been further expanding and worsening as of early August, says a new report.

According to the latest report from the Global Drought Observatory, 47% of Europe is in “warning” conditions, meaning soil has dried up and that severe precipitation deficit has affected river discharges widely across Europe.

The Global Drought Observatory further said that water and heat stresses have substantially reduced summer crop yields. It says the most affected crops are grain, maize, soybeans, and sunflowers.

“Soil moisture and vegetation stress are both severely affected. Drought hazard has been increasing, especially in Italy, Spain, Portugal, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Romania, Hungary, northern Serbia, Ukraine, Moldova, Ireland, and the United Kingdom,” says the report. “The rest of Europe, already affected by drought, maintains stable severely dry conditions”.

The report further notes that for most of Europe, after a long sequence of unusually dry forecasts, close to normal conditions are predicted from August to October 2022.

“This may not be enough to fully recover from the deficit cumulated in more than half a year, but it will alleviate the critical conditions of many European regions and of the affected sectors,” it says.

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