Heavy rainfall allays fears of drought in Switzerland
After several months of drought warnings across the country, heavy rains in all Swiss cantons have ended concerns about dangerously low water levels. In eastern and central Switzerland, water levels are back to normal, with analysts at some Swiss lakes marking the water line much higher than usual for the time of year.
Forest fire risk reduced after heavy rain
Many across Switzerland had voiced concerns about the lack of rainfall over the last winter, with authorities issuing warnings about the possibility of forest fires as temperatures warmed up for spring. Thankfully, due to rainy weather in the past few days and weeks, this risk is beginning to decline.
The regions that have seen the most rain recently are the Bernese Oberland, the central and eastern-northern slopes of the Alps, as well as the central and eastern Mittelland. According to the Federal Office for the Environment, water levels in a number of lakes have even risen above average for the time of year.
In the south of the country, in Ticino, Swiss lakes have filled back up, while groundwater supplies have returned to normal levels for this time of year. The news comes just months after farmers across the border in northern Italy expressed deep concern about the drought threatening food production in the region.
Lack of snow in the Swiss mountains remains
Despite the positive development in terms of rain, there is still not enough snow in the Swiss mountains. In the country's higher-altitude mountains, the amount of snow is below average for the time of year. The Federal Office for the Environment stresses that this could mean yet another dry season if more snow doesn’t fall, since snow melt contributes a significant amount of water to the flow of rivers in Switzerland.
Image: Shutterstock.com / Michael Derrer Fuchs