Extreme Temperature Diary- Thursday February 23rd, 2023/Main Topic: Europe’s Historic Drought Extends Through the Winter Driving Concerns for This Year

The main purpose of this ongoing blog will be to track planetary extreme, or record temperatures related to climate change. Any reports I see of ETs will be listed below the main topic of the day. I’ll refer to extreme or record temperatures as ETs (not extraterrestrials).😉

Main Topic: Europe’s Historic Drought Extends Through the Winter Driving Concerns for This Year

Dear Diary. During 2022 we all saw horrific pictures of major rivers across Europe drying up with countries such as the United Kingdom experiencing all-time record heat. It was hoped that the fall and winter season would bring some relief in the form of much needed rain and snow. Unfortunately, the European drought has extended into the winter looking at statistics coming from countries such as France, Italy, and the United Kingdom:

The drought is influencing the availability of products in grocery stores this season:

One ray of hope is that our triple La Niña is rapidly breaking down after three years of influencing Europe’s weather toward very dry, hot conditions. Yet most climatologists think that northern Europe will become more like the drier Mediterranean and southern Europe more like the Sahara in the long run. Is the drought of 2022/23 a harbinger of this? Probably unfortunately.

Here is more on the French Drought from the BBC:

French drought alert after driest winter since 1959 – BBC News

French drought alert after driest winter since 1959


France has recorded 32 days without rainfall, after a severe drought last year

France is facing drought restrictions after its driest winter for more than 60 years.

Following a month of no significant rainfall, the country is now in a state of alert.

Local officials will gather on Monday to assess the situation “territory by territory”, Ecological Transition Minister Christophe Béchu has said.

Last year was France’s hottest year on record, according to national weather agency Météo-France.

Records were broken elsewhere in Europe – in the UK, Spain and Italy.

The hot temperatures triggered drought conditions that many regions are yet to recover from.

Snowfall in the Italian Alps is down by 53% and water levels in the Po basin of Italy’s largest river are 61% below normal, according to researchers.

A state of emergency was declared last July in five northern regions surrounding the River Po because of the 2022 drought. Low tides in Venice have meant gondolas and water taxis are unable to move around because of muddy canals and the foundations of buildings in the Grand Canal have become exposed.

Last month, a report published by Nature Climate Change warned that the Alps, Europe’s most important mountain range for supplying rivers, had seen a 5.6% reduction in snow cover duration per decade over the last 50 years.

Low tides in Venice have grounded gondolas and water taxis (Reuters)

The drought in Italy has raised questions about how to manage water crises, which experts say will become more frequent due to climate change.

Italian environmental group Legambiente has appealed to the government to agree a national water strategy. “2023 has just begun but it’s showing worrying signs in terms of extreme weather events and drought levels,” said director Giorgio Zampetti.

In France, the ecological transition minister said that “soft” restrictions could be imposed after next Monday’s meeting with local leaders, to take effect in March to avoid “catastrophic conditions” during the summer months.

Météo-France said between 21 January and 21 February there had been no precipitation at all, referring a cumulative total of less than 1mm rainfall for the whole of France.

Snow cover in the Pyrenees and Alps was also significantly lower than normal during a period considered crucial for replenishing France’s groundwater reserves.

Rain was expected to return to southern France on Wednesday, the agency said, and the next three months would prove decisive.

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More on this story


Here are some “ET’s” recorded from around the planet the last couple of days, their consequences, and some extreme temperature outlooks, as well as any extreme precipitation reports (These were too numerous on 2/23/2022 to post, so only reports from major cities are reported here.):

Here is more climate and weather news from Thursday:

(As usual, this will be a fluid post in which more information gets added during the day as it crosses my radar, crediting all who have put it on-line. Items will be archived on this site for posterity. In most instances click on the pictures of each tweet to see each article. The most noteworthy items will be listed first.)

If you like these posts and my work please contribute via the PayPal widget, which has recently been added to this site. Thanks in advance for any support.) 

Guy Walton… “The Climate Guy”

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