World (The Times Groupe)- Drought could affect three-quarters of humanity by 2050, the UN warned Friday as it observed World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought.
The day, which has been observed annually since 1995, aims to change public attitudes toward the leading cause of desertification and land degradation.
The theme of this year’s conference is “Rising up from drought together,” which emphasizes the need for early action to prevent disastrous consequences for humanity and the environment.
In the wake of global warming and vanishing water resources, drought is on the rise worldwide according to data compiled by Anadolu Agency from scientific findings and reports by international institutions.
According to a report by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) in 2021, droughts have increased by 29% since 2000.
UNICEF predicts that one in four children will live in drought-hit areas by 2040.
From 1900 to 2019, 11.7 million people have died from drought-related causes, while Africa has suffered 134 droughts in the last two decades more than any other continent.
Europe has experienced 45 droughts in the last decade. Europe has been hit with a cost exceeding $27 billion, with 15% of its land and 17% of its population being affected.
The damage caused by drought only to agricultural products in the United States has reached $250 billion in the past century.
After floods, drought is the most frequent natural disaster that affects humans worldwide, reducing India’s gross domestic product by 2 to 5%. In Australia, drought has reduced agricultural production by 18% since 2000.
Somalia, Zimbabwe, Djibouti, Mauritania and South Africa are among the countries most at risk from drought. un