July weather: No end to the drought in sight

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A speculation

image: Markus Spiske / Pexels

July was above average warm and above all much too dry

The past July did not exactly feel like an extraordinary month in Germany, although in the far north, the sea ice was particularly rapid again withdraws. The data of the German Weather Service (DWD) see it somewhat differently.

In its monthly analysis As far as the weather is concerned, he notes that the national average for July was 0.8 degrees Celsius above the average for the years 1961 to 1990, which are generally taken as the reference period. On the other hand, if you take the decades 1981 to 2010 as a yardstick, July was too cold by 0.3 degrees Celsius.

Or in other words: Those who have got used to the mostly warm summers of the past decades will have felt that July was too cool. In fact, it only reflects habituation to climate change.

Regionally, the temperatures were – not surprisingly – quite different, although the differences were much stronger than usual. A closer look shows that only the Schleswig-Holsteiners really had reason to complain.

Not only was the number of hours of sun below average here. The temperature also actually lagged behind the average of the climate reference period. in the real north with an average of 15.9 degrees Celsius it was really too cold by 0.4 degrees Celsius.

At the same time, the land between the seas and neighboring Hamburg were the only two federal states with slightly above-average rainfall. Even in Bavaria, which once again saw numerous thunderstorms in its extreme south and experienced heavy rainfall, only around 70 percent of the target fell in the national average. In neighboring Baden-Württemberg it was less than 50 percent, in Saarland only 24 percent. The rain was particularly rare in Hesse, Rhineland-Palatinate, Thuringia and Saxony.

In other words, the water balance situation is still tense in almost all federal states. Of the Drought index of the Helmhotz Center for Environmental Research in Leipzig shows alarming red for large parts of the country with the water available for plants in the top 25 centimeters. The situation is only relaxed in the northwest coastal regions and on the edge of the Alps. Even in the southeast of Schleswig-Holstein and in large parts of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, the situation tends to be critical.

It looks even worse when looking at the ground down to a depth of 1.8 meters. Here the people of Leipzig classify the situation in large parts of eastern Germany as extreme or – which is their highest level – exceptional drought. Also in the west of the republic there is at least the lowest drought level almost everywhere in the upper 1.8 meters. No wonder the forests are doing so badly.

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