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News Prolonged drought and record temperatures have critical impact in the Mediterranean

Severe and prolonged drought events have affected Europe for more than two years and northern Africa for six years, causing water shortages and hampering vegetation growth.

Today the Commission’s Joint Research Centre (JRC) publishes its report Drought in the Mediterranean – January 2024 on the persisting droughts and their impact across the wider region.

Long-lasting, above-average temperatures, warm spells and poor precipitation have led to severe drought conditions in the Mediterranean region, affecting numerous areas across southern Italy, southern Spain, Malta, Morocc, Algeria, and Tunisia. In the midst of winter, the ongoing drought is already having critical impacts, according to the report compiled by the JRC-run European Drought Observatory (EDO).

It also points to seasonal forecast predicting a warmer spring in southern Italy, Greece, the Mediterranean islands, and northern Africa. As the drought’s severity is expected to persist, concerns rise about its impacts on agriculture, ecosystems, drinking water availability and energy production.

The report shows the importance of climate mitigation – every tenth of a degree of global warming will increase the risks of prolonged droughts – as well as adaption measures for water management and for sectors depending on fresh water like agriculture and drinking water production in face of worsening impacts of global warming.

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News type Inbrief
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Source of information jrc
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News date 29/02/2024
Working language(s) ENGLISH