Farmers fear consequences of record drought Skip to content

Farmers fear consequences of record drought

According to meteorologist Haraldur Ólafsson, the period between mid-June and mid-July has never been recorded as dry. Farmers in south Iceland fear crop failure with continued drought and that they cannot produce enough hay for the winter.

“My hayfields are drying up,” Ómar Helgason, a dairy farmer in Lambhagi in Rangárvellir, told Fréttabladid. Helgason said he usually produces 15 hayrolls per hectare each year, but this year was only able to produce five.

The farmer currently lacks 1,000 hay rolls, amounting to roughly ISK 2.5 million (USD 42,000, EUR 30,000). “If it rains soon I could produce 500 rolls in the second round of haymaking, which is much less than I need, but it would help,” Helgason said.

Ólafsson said this dry weather condition is caused by lack of low pressure areas. Lows have not decreased but are currently situated over the European mainland, causing heavy rain in Britain and Denmark.

The meteorologist said although mid-June to mid-July has never been as dry in south Iceland since weather recordings began in the early 20th century, there have been longer lasting droughts before in other times of year.

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