Water consumption in Flanders down by 7%

Summary

As Flanders heads into a possible second heat wave, residents are responding to provincial calls to conserve water

Put away that hose

The campaign to limit the use of water in the ongoing drought is paying off, according to AquaFlanders. Authorities in all five provinces in Flanders have one-by-one asked residents to conserve their use of water over the last few weeks.

“We are pleased that the governors’ call has been heeded,” an AquaFlanders spokesperson said yesterday, according to Flanders News. “Over the course of the week, we have seen a 7% drop in water consumption”.

Residents are being asked to not use water unless it’s absolutely necessary, to skip watering their lawns and washing their cars, for instance.

July saw an official heat wave that lasted 15 days. In Belgium, a heat wave is announced when the average temperature stays at 25°C or above for at least five days, with three of the days seeing temperatures of 30 or higher.

Record-breaking heat

According to the Royal Meteorological Institute, July was one of the warmest on record in Belgium, with a high temperature of 38.8 in Limburg on the 27th tying with the highest temperature ever recorded. The day before was the hottest 26th July ever in the country.

It has also been exceptionally dry, with an average rainfall at about 67% of normal. The humidity, at 54%, broke an all-time record low of 62% recorded in 2006. The average humidity for July is 73%.

And there is no end in sight. According to VRT meteorologist Frank Deboosere, there could be a second heat wave announced next week. Temperatures today will reach 30 in Limburg and 29 in Brussels, while tomorrow and Thursday will see that increasing up to 32 degrees.

Temperatures are expected to fall to a more comfortable 25 by 10 August, though no rain is being forecast for Flanders.

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