Saturday, June 11, 2011

England sees driest spring in a century as drought hits UK

SHOOT: The Free State and Mississippi seem to be getting England's rain.

With fields left parched and rivers at record lows, government officials and experts meet to discuss the drought across the UK
    Drought in UK : River Derwent bone dry at Seathwaite
    The River Derwent was bone dry at Seathwaite on 3 May 2011. England has had its driest May in a century. Photograph: Paul Kingston/NNP
    England suffered its driest spring in a century last month, leaving fields parched and many rivers at record lows, the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology (CEH) said on Friday, as government officials met experts and utilities to discuss the drought conditions prevailing in many parts of the country. But Scotland, by contrast, had its wettest spring on record for the three-month period of March, April and May, showing the wide regional variation. Much of the south-east of England has also escaped drought. Most reservoir stocks throughout northern Scotland and Northern Ireland were described as "healthy" by the CEH, the public sector research centre charged with collating drought data. For England and Wales as a whole in May, stocks were within 4% of the early June average. In areas such as London, stocks are also estimated within 10% of capacity, but in the south-west, Wales and the Midlands, reservoir stocks are 10-20% below where they should be at this time of year. Read the rest.

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