Analysis 21 Aug 17

‘Lucifer’ Wreaks Havoc With Balkan Agriculture

One of the worst-ever heat waves to hit the Balkans this summer, ‘Lucifer’ has brought drought and forest fires, decimating crops across the region, experts say.

Srecko Latal, Dorentina Kastrati, Sinisa Jakov Marusic, Filip Rudic
BIRN
Sarajevo, Pristina, Skopje, Belgrade
The extreme weather has decimated grain and corn crops, as well as fruit and vegetable production across the Balkans. Photo: Pixabay

While many people in the Balkans still remain on their summer holidays, officials across the region have started calculating the damage that the prolonged heat wave, codenamed Lucifer, has inflicted on agriculture.

The region was exposed to extraordinarily harsh heat for almost two months, with temperatures steadily exceeding 35 degrees Celsius, drought, as well as frequent thunder and even hailstorms.

Experts warn that the extreme weather has decimated grain and corn crops, as well as fruit and vegetable production across the Balkans, which is also having a damaging effects on livestock breeding and dairy production.

Given that much of the region's economy, especially its small farms, depends on agriculture, the damage will have a major impact on the economies of most Balkan countries for some time, experts stress.   

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