Water and Food Shortages Hit Western China

The cisterns of western China are empty, as prolonged drought brings the people of the the Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region to their knees. The seven-month drought has devastated water and food supplies in the area, all but erasing any means of economic activity for the 1.37 million people of the region, China Daily reported Monday.

According to a regional civil affairs bureau, the dry spell has hit 11 counties and districts, leaving 760,000 people without water, destroying 317,500 hectares of crops and creating a food shortage for another 615,000 people. Though the Ningxia region is historically drought prone, this particular rainless period has been worse than previous.

“These areas have reported no significant rain since November,” said Liu Zhonglin, a bureau official in charge of disaster relief. “The drought affected spring and summer plowing and killed even winter wheat.”

The regional government urged county and city authorities to provide aid to the struggling areas, where at least 870,000 people need immediate relief. The prospects for sufficient rain are low, Zhonglin added.

Read more here.

Source: China Daily

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