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‘The next pandemic’: drought is a hidden global crisis, UN says



According to the latest UN report, between 1998 and 2017 drought has caused economic losses of $ 124 billion and affected 1.5 billion people.

“Drought is on the verge of becoming the next pandemic and there is no vaccine to cure it,” Mami Mizutori, UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Disaster Risk Reduction, said in an online conversation.

The report said that the figures due to drought are likely to have been underestimated.

The UN report said that climate change is now rapidly increasing drought in southern Europe and western Africa.

Mizutori says that if the world does not act, the number of victims is sure to increase.

The United Nations says that under a high-emissions scenario, about 130 countries could face a greater risk of drought by the end of this century.

The report said that another 23 countries will face water scarcity due to population growth and 38 countries will be affected by both.

Mizutori says that drought is like a virus that lasts for a long time and has a wide geographical reach.

“This may indirectly affect countries that are not actually facing droughts due to food insecurity and rising food prices,” Mizutori said.

The United Nations forecasts that most of Africa, Central and South America, Central Asia, southern Australia, southern Europe, Mexico, and America will see more frequent and severe droughts.

News Source: TheGuardian

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