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Rome faces water rationing, fountain shutoff as Italy dries up amid scarce rain, leaky aqueducts

AP on July 24, 2017

ROME - Scarce rain and chronically leaky aqueducts have combined this summer to hurt farmers in much of Italy and put Romans at risk for drastic water rationing as soon as this week.

Sky TG24 TV meteorologists noted on Sunday that Italy had experienced one of its driest springs in some 60 years and that some parts of the country had seen rainfall totals 80 percent below normal. Among the hardest-hit regions was Sardinia, which is seeking natural disaster status.

Farmers’ lobby Coldiretti last week estimated €2 billion ($2.3 billion) worth of damage so far to Italian agriculture. Dairy farmers are lamenting drops in milk production. Among those suffering are farmers growing canning tomatoes in the southeastern region of Puglia, wine grapes throughout much of Italy and those cultivating olives - all signature crops for the nation.

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