Spain can prepare for rain and hail by a DANA. This is good news, but not enough

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Right now, as I write these lines, a huge subtropical DANA is moving from the northwest of the Canary Islands towards the Iberian Peninsula. Just as he arrives, he will encounter an upper polar trough and the result will be: dynamite. That is, storms, rain and hail. The season of intense storms begins that will take us to the gates of autumn. In fact, it starts today and it’s going to explode tomorrow.


Important: we are not talking about heat. As for the heat, there is bad news. During these days the temperatures will continue to be quite high (above expectations) and in much of the south they will easily exceed 40 degrees. How is it possible? It is interesting to stop at this because, after months talking about the “Iberian oven” (that is, how atmospheric stability generates the ideal conditions for temperatures to rise a lot on the peninsula), we run the risk of identifying atmospheric instability with the cold . And the truth is that it has nothing to do with it.

On a practical level, you can spend a whole week in non-stop rain without the high temperatures being altered. It is not usual because, often, the rains are caused by the entry of cold air from the north; however, when air masses come from warmer areas, storms may not cool the environment more than anecdotally.

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So what are we talking about? We are talking about storms: very intense storms, in fact. The AEMET has activated yellow warnings for rain (between 10 and 15 liters per square meter per hour) and hail throughout the land corridor that goes from Asturias to Castellón. On Thursday, the interaction between the DANA and the trough will reach its highest point and will be felt throughout the northeastern part of the country.

Let’s enter a much more unpredictable terrain. From now on and for a few weeks, everything is going to get much more confusing. The best example is that we do not know what will happen next weekend. The reason is that the models talk about the appearance of another DANA, but the uncertainty of the season makes us not know what will happen to her. Although there are clear reasons to be optimistic in September, those uncertainties make the predictions that much more complex (and unspecific).

the real problem. However, this is all pure entertainment. As we have been repeating for weeks, the real problem is elsewhere. The 2021-2022 hydrological year has been the third driest of the 21st century and fourth since we have records. This translates into 26% less rainfall, with the aggravating circumstance that our water reserves were already very low. In addition, it does not seem that this is going to be solved quickly: La Niña seems that it is going to last until the end of the year (or even until 2023). If we take into account that 2022 is already the third driest year in the series, things look pretty bad.

Image | GTRES

Right now, as I write these lines, a huge subtropical DANA is moving from the northwest of the Canary Islands…

Right now, as I write these lines, a huge subtropical DANA is moving from the northwest of the Canary Islands…

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