A quickly advancing monsoon covered India by June 16, the earliest date on record and one month before usual, AlertNet reported. The early rains will help improve the growth and yields of summer crops like rice and soybeans, analysts said.
Scarce Water Supplies
Tight water supplies are getting even tighter in Jordan, as half a million Syrian refugees swell the country’s borders, The Washington Post reported. Prices for water are rising, and wells are beginning to run dry as the government struggles to dig more.
Many counties in the western United States are simultaneously experiencing drought and a boom in hydraulic fracturing for oil and gas, the Associated Press found. The extra demand for water has sparked tensions between farmers and drillers.
Heavy rains across the U.S. Midwest are not only slowing down crop plantings, but may also fuel a larger-than-normal, hypoxic “dead zone” in the Gulf of Mexico, Bloomberg News reported. Forecasts say this year’s dead zone, caused by massive fertilizer runoff, could be as large as New Jersey.
Tiny storage ponds that collect rainwater have led to more stable food supplies for farmers in Bangladesh, the Inter Press Service reported. The ponds help guard against drought and allow crop cultivation even in the dry season.