A new wave of extreme heat has worsened the drought in France. Almost every part of the country is affected, but in 100 municipalities, even the tap water has run out. Now the government is calling in a crisis group and urging the population to be sparing with drinking water.
France is going through the worst drought ever, warns French Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne.
Drinking water out
In over 100 municipalities in south-eastern France, the drought is so extensive that there is no longer water in the taps. Other municipalities have been urged to save on tap and drinking water.
The French state is also working to coordinate so that drinking water can be transported to the affected areas by trucks. The Prime Minister’s office writes in a statement that the drought means a “disaster” for the country’s farmers as well as for ecosystems and biological diversity.
The high temperatures have increased evaporation from lakes and waterways, whose levels have dropped just as the need for irrigation is great before the autumn harvest times.
Affects energy production
The energy company EDF has also been forced to reduce activity at several nuclear power plants. Due to adjacent rivers’ low water levels and the rising water temperature, there have been problems cooling the reactors.
In addition, in such a situation, releasing back normal amounts of the water used to cool the reactors would mean further temperature increases that are deemed harmful to animal and plant life.
The government has reacted by deploying a crisis team and urging everyone to conserve water. However, golf courses are exempt and continue to be watered, which has led to growing criticism regarding the government’s handling of the country’s most severe water crisis to date.