Europe: concerns over extreme drought intensify

All Europe is increasingly suffering from drought: crops are drying up and streams and rivers are disappearing. Meanwhile, worrying images of desolate landscapes are coming from popular tourist regions like Catalonia and Andalusia. What can and must be done?

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La Vanguardia (ES) /

The battle for water has begun

La Vanguardia anticipates tensions:

“The fact that citizens will feel obliged to share the available water with visitors from abroad in a drought scenario could exacerbate tourism phobia. ... Catalonia cannot and must not abandon its powerful tourism sector, any more than it can give up its agriculture or industry. All these sectors must adapt to the restrictions and changes resulting from the current severe drought. ... The means and technologies already exist: from larger green desalination plants to systems for reusing the water we already have.”

L'Humanité (FR) /

Clear vision lacking

Writing in L'Humanité, environmental expert Sabine Martin criticises Macron's planned package of anti-drought measures in France:

“The water plan lacks a clear vision. The key to overcoming the structural deficit lies in soil conservation and regeneration. ... Industrial agriculture and our land-use planning are incompatible with good water management because they favour the misuse and desertification of soils. The top priority is to preserve and regenerate all soils. ... The second is to stop the extraction of raw materials from soil, which poses a direct threat to water.”

La Stampa (IT) /

Don't just read climate research, act on it

The results of climate research must lead to concrete action, warns geologist Marco Tozzi in La Stampa:

“The oil and gas majors commissioned specialised studies between the 1970s and 1990s, and paid the best climatologists in the world. These studies have now been made public and display extraordinary accuracy. They correctly identified that the CO2 content of the air would exceed the threshold of 420 ppm in these years. So the scientists did their job very well, even though they were paid by those who had an interest in denying catastrophic consequences. The take-away: climatology is a real science. The corporations knew everything but failed to act.”