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Large swathes Europe are experiencing droughts and water shortages. One region is experiencing its worst drought 70 years. The area, northern Italy, has had hardly any rainfall the past four months. This year's snowfall was 70 per cent lower. This has caused the River Po, Italy's largest, to be three metres lower than average. A lot the riverbed has dried and people can walk across the mud. In one part, the declining water level has fully exposed a World War II shipwreck. Authorities are concerned that if it doesn't rain soon, there'll be a serious water shortage. This means water will be rationed drinking. Farmers will also have problems finding water to irrigate their crops.

A spokesperson Italy's Po Basin Authority said the water shortages are unprecedented. The river gets much its water Lake Maggiore in the Italian Alps. The lake is seeing its lowest water level 1946. Problems are being exacerbated higher-than-average temperatures and a mini heat wave. A farmer the tiny rural town of Guastalla, 150 km southeast of Milan, said she is expecting a "disastrous year". She said: "With such high temperatures and no rain...the situation is catastrophic." She added: "We believe that there will be a drop wheat productivity by least 20 per cent due to the lack rain." The Po Valley will see a 30 to 40% reduction fruit and vegetable production.

Back to the Italy's drought lesson.

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