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Articles on Drought

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Workers attempt to repair a water main break in Jackson, Miss. Joshua Lott/The Washington Post via Getty Images

The South’s aging water infrastructure is getting pounded by climate change – fixing it is also a struggle

Extreme downpours and droughts, both fueled by rising global temperatures, are taking a toll on water infrastructure. Communities trying to manage the threats face three big challenges.
El Niño droughts such as this one in southern Malawi are becoming regular features in southern Africa. Guido Dingemans/Die Eindredactie/Getty Images

El Niño disasters: governments know what’s coming, but are unprepared – what must change

Governments in southern Africa don’t invest enough in weather forecasting and fail to work together to prepare for natural disasters, leaving the most vulnerable exposed to successive droughts.
Highway 4 crosses Lake Diefenbaker at Saskatchewan Landing Provincial Park. Lake Diefenbaker is a part of the South Saskatchewan river basin which faces unprecedented levels of reduced water flows in 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Michael Bell

Water woes in southern Alberta could spell disaster for aquatic ecosystems, and the people who rely on them

Declining precipitation, climate change and governance failures will drive water flow scarcity in 2024 with serious implications across Western Canada.
Road collapse in northern Kenya due to flash floods on 22 November 2023. Photo by Luis Tato/AFP via Getty Images

East Africa must prepare for more extreme rainfall during the short rainy season – new study

Projections show that there’ll be Indian Ocean dipoles in the future – and that means more rainy days, and more extreme rainfall.
New Africa / Shutterstock

Would you drink recycled water?

Recycled waste water is perfectly safe to drink, but many people aren’t keen to use it for anything other than watering plants.
The 2016 El Niño drought in Malawi dried out maize fields, leaving only weeds. It caused a famine that left over 60 million people in Southern Africa dependent on food aid. Andrew Renneisen/Getty Images

El Niño: Malawi’s harvest of its staple food maize may fall by 22.5% this year

Food security experts recommend that rural farmers in Malawi be given access to irrigation systems to free them from reliance on rain, and find ways outside farming to earn an income.
India’s new water manual aims to establish continuous piped water supply for all Indians moving forward — a goal it is unlikely to achieve. (AP Photo/Rajesh Kumar Singh)

India’s new manual for water supply will replicate past failures

Achieving continuous supply requires both a realistic assessment of the situation and a realistic plan to meet the goal. The Government of India’s new initiatives have neither.
Heavy smoke from wildfires in northern Alberta and British Columbia fill the air at 9 a.m. in Yellowknife, N.W.T. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Bill Braden

COP28: How 7 policies could help save a billion lives by 2100

A recent study found one billion people are likely to die prematurely by the end of the century from climate change. Here are seven energy policies that could save their lives.

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