Photo Credit: AP Photo/Frank Augstein
The impacts of the climate crisis are having a devastating effect on Europe. According to the European Drought Observatory, almost 60% of the land mass of the European Union and the United Kingdom has now received extreme drought warnings or signals. The area of Texas and Alaska put together is smaller than this domain.
The information was acquired in a 10-day period toward the end of July. A total of 45% of the region is said to be under warnings, according to the assessment. This indicates that the area’s soil is too dry to support healthy crop growth and the stability of neighboring vegetation. 15% of the population is currently on “alert” status, meaning that the vegetation and agriculture are seriously harmed.
The same report, which stated that the majority of Europe is having a “dryer-than-average” July, was released by Copernicus, the European Union’s climate monitoring agency. The survey also showed that many of the regions covered in Southwestern and Southeastern Europe saw frequent dry spells and drought and that July’s temperatures topped prior records.
The organization added that because of the climate’s dryness, wildfires started spreading and destroying the plant and animal habitats along their path. The problem is being made worse by the ongoing heat wave. These occurrences could indicate that Europe is about to have one of the warmest summers on record.
Other problems worsen the condition
While the nation is being devastated by extreme heat, supply chain issues persist. Shipments bringing essential commodities, including wheat, oil, and gas, are blocked as a result of the ongoing hostility between Russia and Ukraine. According to experts, this arrangement might last into the latter half of 2022.
The harvest of various crops and goods in Europe would decline, according to the Joint Research Centre. All current information indicates that a decline of 8 to 9 percent may occur for products like grain, maize, soybeans, and sunflower.
Freja Vamborg, a senior scientist who works for Copernicus, said, “dry conditions from previous months combined with high temperatures and low precipitation rates seen in many areas during July may have adverse effects on agricultural production and other industries such as river transport and energy production.”
Little precipitation in July
As the heat persists, water reservoirs have reached record lows. According to Copernicus, July experienced little to no rain, which made the problem worse. Low supply suggests that the government won’t be able to meet customer demand.
Since 1836, the southern half of England has not experienced its driest conditions. The driest month for the area was July. The month is the driest month in 20 years in the United Kingdom. In addition, the UK only experienced an average of 46.3 mm of rainfall in the months from January to July, with the exception of February, which received a lot of rain.
The smallest amount of rainfall ever recorded in France since 1959 was 9.7mm. In addition, the statistic is 85% off the average rate of precipitation between 1991 and 2020.
Since December 2021, precipitation levels in Italy have decreased as well. Due to the phenomena, the northern half of Italy, including the Po River, has totally dried up.
The warmest month ever recorded globally was in July. It exceeded the average worldwide temperature during the period of 1991 to 2020 by 0.4 degrees Celsius.
Several areas in the UK recorded temperatures around 40 degrees Celsius. Spain, the United Kingdom, and France were among the regions that recorded temperatures around 40 degrees Celsius. Last July 19, the temperature in the United Kingdom surpassed the 40-degree Celsius mark. Coningsby, in particular, registered 40.3 degrees Celsius.
“July 2022 has been extremely hot in Spain, the warmest since at least 1961, with an average temperature of 25.6 ºC [78.1 Fahrenheit], which is 2.7 ºC [4.9 Fahrenheit] higher than the normal average,” the country’s national weather agency AEMET said in a post on Twitter. July was “0.2 ºC [0.4 Fahrenheit] higher than that of July 2015, which until now was the warmest month of July,” Copernicus said.
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