Evening Update Friday 5 August 2022

French Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne has activated an inter-ministerial crisis unit to co-ordinate government measures to fight the drought. The government said today that current conditions were the most serious drought ever recorded in France and the situation could continue for the next fifteen days or more. The Prime Minister has asked Prefects to bring together local water management organizations next week to discuss their priorities for getting water to those who need it.

Christophe Bechu, the French Ecological Transition Minister, has said that over a hundred municipalities across France no longer have drinking water because of the drought. Locally, equipment has been transported to a village in the Alpes-Maritimes by helicopter today in order to connect it to a new source of water. The dry conditions have meant that a reservoir supplying the village of Castillon in the hills above Menton has had to be replenished by water carrying trucks. The connection to the new water source is expected to be completed in several weeks.

The Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur Regional Health Agency is launching an experiment to test the logistical feasibility of vaccination against the Monkeypox virus by community professionals. The test, which will start on Monday, involves two pharmacies, one in the Bouches-du-Rhône and the other in the east of the Var. There are already 19 vaccination sites in the PACA region, accessible by appointment for those deemed to be at risk from the virus. Full details can be obtained on the agency's website https://www.paca.ars.sante.fr/

Four forest massifs in the Var are on a "Very Severe" level of fire risk today and access is prohibited. They are the Estérel, Maures, Haut-Var and Centre-Var massifs. Five others are at "Severe" risk and access is not recommended. An interactive map of fire risks on the Var massifs and the various restrictions is available on the Prefecture's website www.var.gouv.fr In the Alpes-Maritimes the Esterel-Tanneron massif is on a "Very Severe" level, with several other on a lower level of alert.

A forest fire in the Alpes-de-Hautes-Provence which was virtually extinguished earlier this week resumed yesterday. Firefighters were once again fighting the outbreaks near the communes of Villeneuve and Niozelles.

Nice Deputy Mayor Anthony Borre has said that the French state has informed the city of Nice that the encampment on the sea wall in the port will be removed next week. He said that it has taken more than 10 days at the expense of the people of Nice and "it's time to simplify things".



The governor of the Bank of England has defended the Bank's decision to raise interest rates. Speaking to the BBC today Andrew Bailey said that there is a "real risk" of soaring prices becoming "embedded". He warned against high pay rises, saying this would make inflation worse. He denied accusations that the Bank had been too slow to raise interest rates.

There have been more new jobs created in the United States than expected.  Non-farm payroll numbers released today show that 528,000 new jobs were created in July. The unemployment rate fell to 3.5%, down from 3.6%.

Workers at the port of Felixstowe in the UK are set to strike for eight days in a dispute over pay. About 1,900 members of the Unite union will walk out on 21 August after rejecting a 7% pay offer from Felixstowe Dock and Railway Company. Felixtowe is the UK's biggest container port. The union said that the strike action will have a "huge effect on the UK's supply chain and will also cause severe disruption to international maritime trade".



Football... Chelsea have signed Brighton defender Marc Cucurella for £60 million. He plays for Spain at national level and has signed a six year deal with Chelsea.

Cricket.... Kyle Abbott has signed a two-year contract extension to stay with Hampshire until the end of 2024. The South African player joined in 2017.



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