DPR Korea: Drought - Apr 2019

Disaster description

DPRK is currently experiencing a challenging food insecurity situation. Unusually little precipitation during the winter and spring so far is posing a serious threat to the spring harvest, at a time when the harvest in 2018 was the worst in a decade. Entering 2019, DPRK has experienced unusually erratic weather conditions with little precipitation, limiting the soil moisture for growth of winter and planting of spring crops as well as replenishment of water reservoirs for irrigation. DPRK is already suffering from a protracted food crisis, making the population vulnerable to any further losses of harvest or food. Food production in 2018 in DPRK was the lowest over the past decade. (IFRC, 29 Apr 2019)

According to Joint Rapid Food Security Assessment, following the worst harvest in 10 years, due to dry spells, heatwaves and flooding, it is estimated that 10.1 million people (40 percent of the population) are food insecure and in urgent need of food assistance. The situation could further deteriorate during the lean season from May to September, if no proper and urgent humanitarian actions are taken. (FAO/WFP, 3 May 2019)

As a result of assessment conducted by DPRK Red Cross Society and IFRC Country Office during 6 to 9 May in Ryulsong-ri, Jongpyong County, and in Unha-ri and Unpo-ri, the need for irrigation support to mitigate the impact the drought is urgent, especially to protect subsistence crops. This assessment also found that two out of three communities (Unpo ri and Ryulsong ri) have experienced increased number of diarrhea and colitis cases following the drought, and actions need to be taken to prevent the spread of waterborne diseases (WBD). (IFRC, 27 Jun 2019)

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