The Stream, May 29: Millions Hungry as Afghanistan Drought Spreads

The Global Rundown

The United Nations warns that 2 million people in Afghanistan face severe food shortages because of a harsh drought. Thousands evacuate as Storm Alberto speeds toward the Florida Panhandle. Soaring temperatures in northern India worsen water shortages. Flint, Michigan estimates that 14,000 damaged lead water lines remain in the city’s pipe network. A cyclone shuts down a water production plant in Oman.

“[The] total impact of the cyclone on plant operations cannot yet be precisely assessed at this point in time.” –Statement from Sembcorp Salalah Water and Power Co., owner of a desalination facility in Oman. The facility closed temporarily due to rough seas from Cyclone Mekunu, which also made landfall in Yemen over the weekend. Reuters

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By The Numbers

70 percent Proportion of Afghanistan mired in a “precipitation deficit,” according to the United Nations. Months of drought disrupted parts of the country’s winter harvests, and the UN warns that up to 2 million people could face severe food shortages in coming months. The New York Times

In context: In Kabul, residents chase receding groundwater.

45 degrees Celsius (113 Fahrenheit) Forecasted high temperature in New Delhi, India, this week. Amid stifling heat, many towns in northern India are relying on trucked-in water, with some residents receiving an average of only 5 liters per day. Low water rations increase the risk of waterborne illness in villages. Al Jazeera

Science, Studies, And Reports

An estimated 14,000 lead water lines remain in Flint’s water system, according to a recent city report. Poor record-keeping, among other issues, is complicating the replacement of the condemned pipes. MLive

In context: Circle of Blue’s coverage of the Flint water crisis.

On The Radar

Thousands have evacuated the Florida Panhandle as Subtropical Storm Alberto hurtles toward the coastline. The storm could bring high water and flash flooding across the southern U.S., just days after a separate storm caused a deadly deluge in Maryland. Reuters

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