Due to a prolonged drought in Zambia, maize production could fall from the current 3.6 million tonnes to 1.8-2 million tonnes this crop season if the current dry spell which the nation is experiencing continues.
Papa New Guinea is devastated by drought
Il fenomeno El Niño, eccezionalmente intenso, ha provocato gravi danni alle colture. I contadini sono arrivati a mangiare argilla e funghi tossici pur di nutrirsi.
Rain doesn’t fall down and soil becomes more and more arid. Drought has been affecting Papua New Guinea for 4 months: 24 people have already died due to malnutrition and contaminated water.
The drought hitting the country is a consequence of the climate cycle El Niño, which periodically heats the Pacific Ocean. This year’s phenomenon, according to meteorologists, is the worst cycle registered over the past 65 years. Even worse than the cycle between 1997 and 1998 that caused the death of 23,000 people.
Most isolated villagers, completely worn out, are eating toxic mushrooms and clay to fight hunger. Crops have been destroyed, water sources have been contaminated and medical and fuel supplies are exhausted.
International doctors working in the area pointed out the presence of forms of leprosy and suspected cases of cholera and typhus fever. “Animals are beginning to die and when we take some meat our bodies feel stomach pains, feel diarrhoea and weak bodies,” said a local doctor, Jimmy Nebni. “We are praying to God for help in this situation”.
An investigation into the effects of the drought, carried out by humanitarian association Uniting Church, has examined 30 villages scattered through the highlands and has found that sweet potato crops have been decimated due to the combined effects of drought and frost since the El Niño began in April.
Sally Lloyd, Australian woman born in Papua New Guinea whose parents were missionaries, and member of the church community, has been long denouncing the crisis in the country. “I observed people eating clay. It’s a special type of clay. Birds and other animals eat it when there is no food. People break it and chew it, it helps with the hunger, and helps if they are feeling sick.”
The lack of food also led many people to eat toxic mushrooms. Indeed, many cases of comatose status have been registered in medical centres, as well as cases of diarrhoea and vomit.
Although recent rainfalls have relieved the situation in some areas, long-term forecasts are anything but encouraging: alert and food insecurity will last for months.
Climate change is the direct consequence of global warming. Here’s everything you need to know about the causes and effects of one of the biggest threats facing our time.
Due to the worst drought in 40 years, Venezuela is facing energy shortages. The government has announced the public sector staff will work only two days a week.
Not much snow, peaks of 19 degrees Celsius in Norway and even 28 degrees in France: official data confirms the anomalously high temperatures of this past winter.
A spotlight on Licypriya Kangujam, the eight-year-old Indian climate change activist raising her voice against climate change inaction and whose tireless campaigning has even led two Indian states to adopt climate change as a school subject.
Ocean warming has risen to record highs over the last five years: just in 2019 the heat released into the world’s oceans was equivalent to that of 5-6 atomic bombs per second. The culprit, no doubt, is climate change.
Il Corno d’Africa è in ginocchio per colpa di siccità e carestia. Sono 58mila i bambini che combattono, ogni giorno, contro la fame. È tutta colpa di El Niño.
The demise of Lake Poopó is attributable to climate change, pollution, and a wrong management of its waters, scientists say.
One of the worst droughts in Ethiopia’s history is having devastating effects on agriculture and livestock, whilst millions of people face food insecurity.