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Italian water authority: severe drought getting worse and shattering records.

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Italian water authority: severe drought getting worse and shattering records.

The country’s irrigation authority warned on Thursday that drought conditions are swiftly spreading throughout Italy, with rivers and reservoirs drying up and the likelihood of increased temperatures making matters worse.

Nearly a fifth of Italy’s energy needs are met by hydropower plants, the majority of which are situated in the mountains in the north of the nation.

But Rome is struggling to wean itself off its reliance on Russian gas as a result of the conflict in Ukraine, and the lack of rain is making things worse.

While farming organisations predict that agricultural output will decline this year in important growing areas, several Italian regions have already declared states of emergency in an effort to raise money to address the worsening water situation.

In recent years you could see the bow of the boat, so we knew it was there, but to see the vessel so exposed in March, when it was essentially still winter, was very dramatic,” Bonin said. “I’ve never seen such a drought at this time of year – our main worry used to be our river flooding, now we worry about it disappearing.”

The Po River in Italy, which spans the key northern areas and supplies about a third of the nation’s agricultural output, is currently facing its worst drought in the past 70 years.
The level of natural reservoirs in central Italy is also dropping, according to ANBI, and the big northern lakes are already at, or very near, record lows. While the Aniene river’s flow rate has decreased by half, the Tiber river is at multi-year lows.

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