Europe's Winter Heatwave Foreshadowing Severe Drought
Experts warn that following a winter heatwave bolstered by a lack of rain and snow, Europe's water levels are significantly lower than normal and countries could face a repeat of the severe droughts of 2022....
- Experts warn that following a winter heatwave bolstered by a lack of rain and snow, Europe's water levels are significantly lower than normal and countries could face a repeat of the severe droughts of 2022.1
- France, having gone 32 days without rainfall, is preparing to levy water restrictions on residents. Water usage is already restricted in 87 municipalities across southern France — an action that is usually deployed during the hotter and drier summer months.2
- Since Jan. 21, France has received less than one millimeter of rain per day, and the number of days without rain during the winter months is nearing record-breaking levels. With 2022 being the second-hottest year on record, crops were lost, and wildfires impacted the power infrastructure and water reserves.3
- With snowfall in the Alps decreased by 53%, a state of emergency was declared for northern Italy. The river levels of Italy's Po River, have slumped below 61 percent of normal, forcing the docking of gondolas and water taxis in Venice.4
- Dry years have proven to bring increased wildfire threats to Europe. In 2021, intense wildfires burned uncontrollably through Turkey, Greece, Italy, France, Albania, North Macedonia, and Spain. Similar events took place in the Mediterranean, including in Tunisia, Algeria, Lebanon, and Israel.5
- In a study published in January by researchers at Graz University of Technology in Austria, researchers said the water situation in Europe had become 'very precarious.' A researcher for the study, Torsten Mayer-Gürr said, 'a few years ago, I would never have imagined that water would be a problem here in Europe...we are actually getting problems with the water supply here — we have to think about this.'1
Sources: 1CNN, 2Daily Mail, 3France24, 4BBC News and 5Euronews.
- Establishment-critical narrative, as provided by Politico. Europe's failure on climate change was ever present as the world watched wildfires burn uncontrollably through France, Spain, Greece, and Portugal in 2022. Temps soared and they will continue to soar but what determines how people adapt lies in how well the government does or does not respond. EU governments have simply failed to plan ahead. The EU, by law, requires each country to have the plan to address the changing climate but the distance between the plan and the pace of action is criminal. Until the mindset around climate change is shifted inaction will continue to plague the EU and their failure will remain front-page news.
- Pro-establishment narrative, as provided by Bbc news. The EU recognizes the health and economic dangers of climate change and has begun introducing a series of proposals that would result in having a carbon-neutral bloc by 2050. Meeting the goal will require a great sacrifice from Europeans but it is a responsibility to ensure a healthier and more prosperous future for our children and grandchildren. The plans are the most ambitious yet and are likely to face criticism but EU policymakers understand that residents will make sacrifices for cleaner air, lower warming, and sustainability. The EU plans to set the stage for the rest of the world to follow.
- Narrative C, as provided by Ft. It's easy to dismiss any extreme weather event as a consequence of climate change, but in reality, they're usually influenced by a myriad of factors that have nothing to do with it. More research is needed before we can establish any direct causal link between the two.