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phys.org 25 Jan, 2023 19:15 am

Satellite data shows sustained severe drought in Europe

Satellite data shows sustained severe drought in Europe
Europe has been experiencing a severe drought for years. Across the continent, groundwater levels have been consistently low since 2018, even if extreme weather events with flooding temporarily give a different picture. The beginning of this tense situation is documented in a 2020 study by Eva Boergens in Geophysical Research Letters. In it, she noted that there was a striking water shortage in Central Europe during the summer months of 2018 and 2019.

This is shown by data analyses by Torsten Mayer-Gürr and Andreas Kvas from the Institute of Geodesy at Graz University of Technology (TU Graz).These are located in Austria (Graz University of Technology, Vienna University of Technology, Earth Observation Data Center EODC), Germany (GeoForschungsZentrum GFZ in Potsdam), Switzerland (University of Bern, University of Zurich), France (Collection Localisation Satellites CLS, Laboratoire d'Etudes en Géophysique et Océanographie Spatiales LEGOS, Magellium), Spain (FutureWater), Finland (Finnish Meteorological Institute) and the Netherlands (International Groundwater Resources Assessment Centre IGRAC).eu/ strong Provided by Graz University of TechnologyFrom this we then determine gravity field maps," says Torsten Mayer-Gürr.

Torsten Mayer-Gürr and his team provide the total mass, from which the mass changes in the rivers and lakes are then subtracted, the soil moisture, snow and ice are also subtracted and finally only the groundwater remains.Torsten Mayer-Gürr had not expected this on such a big scale.

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