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Thursday, May 23, 2024

Drought affects almost all of Poland. “We are strategically losing this game”

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Heat during the day, high temperatures also at night and water that is decreasing – this is what Poland has to face. The lake levels are lower and lower, and the lack of water can be seen with the naked eye. There are places in Masuria where a year ago you could go boating, now it’s impossible. Farmers are also suffering from drought. Throughout Poland, as many as 188 communes appeal to save water. Temperatures will reach 36 degrees this weekend. Both are the result of climate change.

In the Great Masurian Lake District, the effects of heat, drought and climate change can be seen with the naked eye. Water decreases every week. – Please look at these reeds, there are such bright elements, you can see how the water was decreasing, these bright elements were once under water – explains Captain Krzysztof Kornaś from the Masurian Rescue Service. – This is getting dangerous. For tourists, for anglers, for users of the lake – emphasizes Stefan Świderski from the Masurian Rescue Service.

The water reveals sandbanks, stones and shallows. More and more sailors have problems with maneuvering, and therefore the Masurian Rescue Service has more interventions. – We estimate that at the moment there is about 30-40 cm of water less than it was at the beginning of the year, so this is a very large loss of water – informs Captain Krzysztof Kornaś.

So far, the driest month in Masuria was September last year, when the water level in the lakes was the lowest after a hot and dry summer. According to the data of the IMGW and the Masurian Rescue Service, there is less water this season than then. Comparing the July measurements year on year, water sportsmen have no illusions – it will only get worse.

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The water level in the lakesIMGW/Mazurian Rescue Service

– At this level, the second bend of Lake Roś will be dry in a moment, there will be no water at all. People have plots of land there, piers. It even looks funny, because the bridge is two meters above the water – describes Captain Krzysztof Kornaś.

There is only one conclusion: after an almost snowless winter, little rainfall and persistent heat, some lakes will no longer be safe for boating.

Drought affects almost the entire country

– When it comes to the hydrological situation, it is very bad, we have very little rainfall. In most parts of the country, in the north and west, this drought is very severe, we have issued hydrological warnings against drought and it has not rained here for many days, and the rainfall that is occurring is not enough – says Ewa Łapińska, forecaster of the Institute of Meteorology and Economy water.

Lack of water and heat are the main causes of losses that farmers expect. This year’s grain harvest may be as much as a quarter lower than last year.

– These plants were fertilized with very expensive fertilizers and now, if the yield is low, we tremble about the price. If it is low, you will have to add to the production – informs Józef Ignaczewski, the head of the Bedlno commune.

– We are really on the brink, because the prices were enormous, the purchase of fuel, and now the prices of cereals are 100% lower than last year. This is no longer vegetation, this is a small capitulation for us – assesses Wiesława Lubocha, a farmer from Bedlno.

Communities call for saving water

Lack of water may soon affect us all, not just farmers. Throughout the country, as many as 188 municipalities issued appeals and bans on reducing water consumption. Konstancin-Jeziorna asks for lawns and gardens not to be watered. Ciechanów in Mazowsze – for the use of water only for food and social purposes. Similar appeals were also issued by the authorities to the inhabitants of Dobra in Małopolska and Żagań in the Lubuskie Voivodeship.

Reason? Heat and drought. – An increase in temperature means greater evaporation and even if we see higher water levels for a moment, the climate makes us strategically lose this game. These disappearances of surface waters, both standing and flowing, will intensify, please do not be surprised that lakes will start disappearing from the area – warns Prof. Bogdan Chojnicki, climatologist from the University of Life Sciences in Poznań.

Heat pouring from the sky and tropical temperatures reaching up to 36 degrees Celsius will come over Poland this weekend. – The tropical African air will come to Poland from the south, from the south-west – informs Ewa Łapińska.

Main photo source: Facts after noon TVN24

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