The Effects of Droughts: Part One: The Economy
When asked what the effects of droughts are, you probably think of the cracked driveway, the resettling of your house, the hot, hot, hotter than hot weather. But effects are more than physical. Some direct impacts of drought are economic, environmental, and social. Economic effects of droughts encompass crop production, which involves damage to crop quality, less food production. Results of crop production would be an increase in importation of food from areas not suffering from drought and thusly that leads to an increase in food prices. Livestock are affected as well.
Because of the drought there is a loss in dairy production, the unavailability of water and feed for livestock leads to high livestock mortality rates, a disruption of reproduction cycles are due to breeding delays. With lack of options there is an increase in predation – the act of preying by a predator that kills and eats its prey. Farmers are not the only ones who suffer from droughts though they do suffer greatly: income loss and unemployment. Retailers who provide goods and services to farmers must deal with reduced business. This later leads to unemployment and loss of tax revenue for the government. The recreational and tourism industries are seriously damaged because tourists do not want to travel to a country suffering from a severe water shortage. Shortages of certain goods results in the costly importation of necessary goods from outside the affected area. Later this week we will go over the environmental and social impacts of droughts.