Consequences of drought

Lesson 3: Water resources

Consequences of drought

Desertification: It is the process by which an area becomes even more barren, less capable of retaining vegetation and progresses towards becoming a desert. This is often a cause of long term disasters. Deforestation, overgrazing etc. bring about changes in rainfall, temperature, wind velocity etc. and also lead to soil erosion. Such changes then lead to desertification of the area. The chief causes of desertification are
  • Climatic factors
  • Human factors: population growth, increased density, reduced nomadism and loss of grazing lands
  • Interactions between climate and culture.

Famine: A famine is a widespread scarcity of food that may apply to any faunal species, which phenomenon is usually accompanied by regional malnutrition, starvation, epidemic, and increased mortality.
It is a catastrophic food shortage affecting large numbers of people due to climatic, environmental and socio-economic reasons. The cause of the famine may produce great migration to less affected areas.


Over utilization of water:With the growth of human population, there is an increasing need for larger amounts of water to fulfill a variety of basic needs. Depletion of ground water is due to the withdrawal of water at a rate far exceeding the natural recharge rate. Demand for water is growing by 2.4% per year. At present 28 countries are facing water shortage problem. Both surface and ground water resources are utilized for drinking, agriculture, industrial and power generation. Floods, drought, improper use, pollution and disease transmission are the problems related to water.

Last modified: Wednesday, 28 December 2011, 7:52 AM