Historic Drought Alarms Farmers

  • english.chosun.com

    June 10, 2022 12:13

    A prolonged drought is increasing worries among farmers. There has been some rain in parts of the country recently, but not nearly enough.

    According to the Korea Meteorological Administration, cumulative precipitation stands at 166.8 mm so far this year, which is just half the average and the lowest since statistics began in 1973.

    From March to May only 154.9 mm of rain fell, compared to 222.1 mm to 268.4 mm in normal years, and last month the amount of precipitation was just 6.1 percent of the average.

    A reservoir in Sinan, South Jeolla Province is dry on Tuesday.

    Farmers are desperate for rain. Kim Kyoung-soon, a 65-year-old in Yangju, Gyeonggi Province, said she gave up cultivating sweet potatoes this year. "No matter how much I water my field, it's not enough," she said. "The drought is so severe that the water doesn't even seep into the ground. All of my sweet potatoes have died and most of my peppers too. This year's crop has failed."

    Choi Ki-dong, a 70-year-old, said this is the worst drought he has experienced.

    Spring temperatures this year have been the highest on record, and sporadic showers have replaced substantial downpours due to unstable atmospheric conditions.

    "There is no nationwide rain forecast for the time being," a weatherman said. "We could see scattered showers next week, but we no nationwide rainfall, so it will take more time until the drought is over." 

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