Field Foresees Losses Of 8,000 Million Due To The Drought

The year 2022 will be remembered, among other things, for being the driest year in recent times, which, together with the high temperatures this summer and the lack of rainfall, endangers the country’s agriculture.

From the agrarian organization Asaja they estimate that this drought could cause losses of more than 8,000 million euros in the field. For this reason, they demand that the Government take the lead in managing the crisis “as other European governments have done” and present urgent measures.

The intense heat waves in summer, with record temperatures above 40 degrees Celsius, and the lack of rainfall have had an impact on a decrease in available water, with reservoirs at 39.2% of their capacity in Spain, according to the latest data from the Ministry for the Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge.

From the agrarian organization they point out that these losses are generated due to the reduction of the main agricultural productions: a 30% reduction in harvest in winter crops or between a 40% and 50% reduction in corn, both in surfaces and in production. , and about half of the estimated production in olive groves, both for table and oil mill.

Added to this are low sunflower yields, which have neutralized the increase in surface areas, significant advances in the harvest and an expected reduction in the harvest of between 25 and 30%, as well as the fall in almond production, with 80% of estimated losses.

On alert since February
And it is that the crisis has been looming on the horizon since the beginning of the year, with a very poor winter in rains and where the alarms went off again after 5 years, since 2017, that a similar situation was not experienced in the national agriculture.

The Government assured in February that it would take the necessary measures while trying to promote sustainable irrigation with energy efficiency and the use of reused or regenerated water, while the autonomous communities propose different solutions according to their reality.

Half a year later the situation has worsened and the data handled by Asaja, which are “disheartening” for the campaign and its short-term forecasts, must be added the possible restrictions that the almost four million hectares of irrigated land in Spain may suffer , which represent a fundamental part of agricultural production.

“If years ago there was talk of a wet Spain and a dry Spain, unfortunately today we can only talk about a dry Spain,” lamented the president of Asaja, Pedro Barato.

Regarding the livestock sectors, Asaja denounces the lack of natural pastures and the “exorbitant” increase in the cost of feeding livestock, which have caused “dramatic” situations such as the closure of farms or the forced slaughter of cattle due to the impossibility of assuming these costs nor being able to pass them on to the following links in the chain.

England braces for crop failure
The British Government has been the first to declare a state of drought in various regions, beginning with restrictions on domestic and commercial use of water. Similarly, it is expected that crops that do not tolerate drought, such as potatoes and corn, may be lost. The irrigation options in the country are diminishing with the passing of days and the reservoirs are emptying at an astonishing speed.

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