Drought in Brazil

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Pele’s home country is a land of contrasts, including differences in weather conditions. One the one hand, a part of Brazil is plagued by floods, on the other hand the North-East regions suffer from acute shortages of water.

Estimating losses for the farmers

It has not rained for two years in some parts of this area. Such drought as the current one has not occurred for almost 50 years! Lack of rainwater impacts agricultural production, and the sugar cane plantations in particular. This part of the country accounts for 10% of Brazilian sugar cane production. Sadly, due to the drought crops have shrunk by one third. Cotton and maize plantations are also drying up. Cattle owners suffer as well, because animals die as a result of inadequate access to food and water.

Threats for the industry

Drought has brought about another kind of danger, with hydropower plants losing efficiency. The output threshold ensuring stable electricity supply is 34%. However, in late December the actual capacity was only 32%. Consequently, power supply may become interrupted, causing difficulties for industrial plants and households.

Individuals depend on water tanks

Water circulation in small towns relies on a network of traveling water dealers. Most towns and cities do not have water reserves, nor are there any waterworks. The resource is therefore provided by businesspeople who purchase water from private wells and distribute it in tanker trailers pulled by donkeys.

Challenge for the country

Brazil might appear to be immersed in World Cup preparations, there are other challenges for the government in Brasilia, however. One major issue is the shortage of water in the North-East states. Finding a way to aid the local community in this predicament would prove a real achievement for the politicians in power.

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