Summit warns of drought risk to England
Sunday 06 February 2005
The summit will hear that summer rainfall may drop by more than half in the south and east of the country, causing acute water shortages and seriously damaging farms.
The summit - which will bring environment ministers Elliot Morley and Lord Whitty together with top officials from the National Farmers Union, the Tenants Farmers Association and the Country Land and Business Association - will also hear that farmland may have to be abandoned to increased winter farming.
But, in compensation, a hotter Britain is likely to be able to grow more of its own wine.
The papers say that scorching summers will become increasingly frequent with global warming, with "very hot Augusts" - such as in 1995 - happening once every five years by 2050. Less rain will fall, and more moisture will evaporate from the soil, causing droughts.
They say: "Hotter and drier summers are likely to result in a seasonal reduction in available water resources and the increased risk of drought. The areas currently under most pressure from agriculture will become further stressed as the regional effects of change are felt."
In winter, Britain will face the opposite problem, as rainfall sharply increases.
Rivers will flood so much more frequently that the Government will no longer "be able to justify maintaining current standards of protection". Winter crops will also suffer as most of them need cold to "vernalise" them.
By contrast, farmers could reap some short-term benefits from global warming as the growing season increases and higher levels of carbon dioxide in the air encourage crops. The papers expect that farmers will also benefit as global warming hits competing countries harder.
Special report, pages 10-11
- 1 The BBC has just done more to eradicate ‘terrorism’ than all our wars since 9/11
- 2 Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
- 3 Mystery man who gave mum heart-warming note on train 'wanted to put a smile on her face'
- 4 Michelle Obama highlights harsh restrictions faced by Saudi women after meeting King Salman without wearing a headscarf
- 5 Grumpy Roald Dahl letter warning student to 'eschew beastly adjectives' rediscovered after 35 years
King Salman: Just five days in, Saudi Arabia's new king has already overseen a beheading
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
Mystery man who gave mum heart-warming note on train 'wanted to put a smile on her face'
Michelle Obama highlights harsh restrictions faced by Saudi women after meeting King Salman without wearing a headscarf
Chilling drone footage captures Auschwitz ahead of 70th anniversary of liberation
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
Negotiable: Tradewind Recruitment: This post arises as a result of the need to...
£120 - £150 per annum: Tradewind Recruitment: I am recruiting on instruction o...
£70000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Head of Finance - Financial Controller - Fina...
£24000 - £28000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Marketing Executive - Wim...