Lake Garda drops to lowest water levels in 15 years as Italy suffers historic drought

·1-min read
 (AFP via Getty Images)
(AFP via Getty Images)

Lake Garda’s water levels have dropped to the lowest recorded in 15 years after scorching temperatures in Italy.

Like other areas in northern Italy, the popular tourist location is experiencing the worst drought in 70 years.

“We are currently at 30cm above the benchmark hydrographic level, compared to an average for this time of year of between 80 and 100,” said Gianluca Ginepro, head of Garda Unico, which promotes the lake.

Operators on the lake have been forced to use catamarans rather than hydrofoil boats due to the low water levels revealing bare rock near the shoreline.

 (REUTERS)
(REUTERS)

As it stands, however, Mr Ginepro warned water levels had not reached crisis levels, adding: “It’s a situation to keep an eye on, even if from the point of view of using the lake for windsurfing, sailing – there is no problem.”

Such is the drought in the country that a state of emergency was declared in the areas surrounding the River Po last month.

Italy’s largest river accounts for approximately 30 per cent of the country’s agricultural production but water levels have fallen significantly over the summer. Due to the drought, an unexploded World War Two bomb was uncovered in the river by local fishermen.

The body of Aran Chada, a British man who jumped from a boat to save his son, was found in Lake Garda this week.