Drought in the offing as southern parts witness less rain


— From May to August, there was -24.4 percent of rainfall all over Pakistan, says PMD

The National Drought Monitoring Centre of Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) on Friday sent out a drought alert due to low rainfall in the southern parts of the country during the July-August monsoon period.

The parts of Sindh that will be affected by moderate to harsh drought-like conditions include Tharparkar, Mityari, Hyderabad, Jacobabad, Dadu, Karachi, Kambar Shadadkot, Umerkot, Sanghar, Sajwal, Shaheed Benazirabad, Jamshoro, and Khairpur.

In Balochistan, Dalbandin, Gawadar, Jiwani, Panjgur, Pasni, Nokkundi, Ormara, Quetta and Turbat will all be affected by moderate to harsh drought-like conditions. A few areas of south Punjab, including Multan and Mianwali, and Gilgit Baltistan’s Bunji, Chilas, Gilgit and Gupis will also experience mild to moderate drought this year.

The PMD said in its alert that “moderate drought-like conditions” have emerged over most of the southern parts of Pakistan due to lack of summer rain.

According to the PMD’s alert, May-June saw seven percent of extra rainfall while July and August saw -30.4 percent rainfall. Overall, from May to August, there was -24.4 percent of rainfall all over Pakistan.

According to the alert, drought conditions may take a severe turn in the coming days especially in southern parts of the country. The alert also predicted water stress due to lack of irrigation water available for Kharif crops.

According to the PMD, the water level in Tarbela dam is at full capacity. However, Mangla dam is only half full with water levels at 65ft at the Mangla reservoir.

“Due to less water in Mangla reservoir and minimal expected rainfall during next three months, the water shortages are most likely to affect the sowing of Rabi crops,” the alert predicted.



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