Sri Lanka: Drought - Aug 2014

Disaster description

The northeast monsoon, which supplies water for agriculture across the key paddy producing areas of Sri Lanka, received below average rainfall for consecutive months between September 2013 and March 2014, leading to prolonged drought across most of the country. By April 2014, over 728,000 people were estimated to be food insecure and in need of assistance as a consequence of the drought. (Govt/WFP, 30 Apr 2014)

By August, low rainfall had further aggravated the impact of the drought, which affected more than 1.8 million people in 16 districts. The Government allocated over $680,000 to provide drought relief, while the UN Emergency Response Coordinator, had approved $2 million from the Central Emergency Response Fund for food, drinking water and health. INGOs and the Red Cross were also responding. (OCHA, 18 Aug 2014)

The 11-month drought eased only in early December. Overall, agricultural production was expected to fall by around 40 percent, with rice production contracting some 30 percent to a six-year low. In the North, crop losses were likely to exceed 30 percent. (Thomson Reuters Foundation, 24 Dec 2014)

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