East Africa - 2011

Aliana Razac


It is scorching hot outside. You can see the ground is starting to crack because of the dehydration. The atmosphere is as dry as could be and scratches your throat when you take a breath. The soil has lost almost all of its colour and has now turned a grayish-brown, impossible to use for farming. Trying to recall the last day of rain is almost impossible. Your existence on earth is held by a thread that can be cut at anytime. Between July 2011 and August 2012, a serious drought had greatly impacted East Africa. The area consisted of Somalia, Dijouti, Ethiopia, Kenya and Uganda. More than 25 000 children under the age of 5 had died in a span of 90 days. Adding to that, majority of livestock, livelihoods and local market systems had been destructed. This led to an even higher level of malnutrition. In total, approximately 13 million lives were impacted greatly.

Drought in Canada

Drought would be among the most expensive natural disasters to recover from in Canada. It would affect a great range of sectors such as agriculture, forestry, human health and recreation. The stress of water availability would cause the depletion of soil making it difficult to plant crops and manage farms. The reduction of stream flows would minimize the amount of hydro-electricity, perhaps even ending that source of power.

The Prairies are the most likely to experience drought. In the past 200 years, over 40 droughts have occurred in Western Canada. The droughts in Northern parts of Canada are nothing of a concern because of the low population density. Northern Canada is not developed compared to the South. There would be nothing to reconstruct if a drought were to occur.

The government of Canada had allocated $145.1 million to support humanitarian relief starting in December 2010. Canada would be able to support themselves if a drought were to happen but many people would have to adjust to the new standard of living. The same amount of people would be injured but because of our well developed health care system we would be able to recover. Reconstruction expenses would be much more costly than Africa. There would be more more homes and buildings to reconstruct. In the mean time, citizens would have to support themselves. Because of the failing agriculture, Canada would have to stop relying on local farms and start to import more produce from outside of the country. Farming families would suffer because of their high dependance on their livestock and crops, they would fall into poverty.