Saturday, September 4, 2010

Paddy Fields in Arakan Damaged by Drought

Rambree: Many acres of paddy fields in three townships in western Burma's Arakan State have been damaged by the lack of rain the area this rainy season, said several farmer sources.

The three townships are Taungup, Rambree, and Kyauk Pru in central Arakan State.

A farmer from Taungup said, "Rice plants in many paddy fields in our township have died after the plants did not receive enough water to grow due to the lack of rain."

Arakan Sate typically gets more rainfall than other areas of Burma, receiving up to 200 inches of rainfall per year. This year however, the rainfall has been very scarce.

"Our state gets more rainfall than other regions of Burma. But this year there has not been very much rain. The rain comes one day, but then not again for another ten days. All the paddy fields were damaged without the water and from the high temperatures when it didn't rain," he said.

The paddy fields located on higher ground have been the most damaged because there is no existing water for irrigation when it does not rain.

A local farmer from Min Byin Village in Rambree Township also said that many paddy fields located beside the motor road between Rambree and Kyauk Pru have also been damaged from the lack of rain in the region.

He added that cultivation of some paddy fields in Rambree and Kyauk Pru Townships has also been postponed due to the lack of rain.

Farmers in the township are now concerned for their crop and livelihood after the drought because paddy product will be scarce in the next paddy season.

According to local environmental sources inside Burma, the lack of rainfall in Arakan State this year is related to the deforestation in the mountains of Arakan Roma. Many thousands of trees in the area have been cut down by local authorities and local timber magnates to export to other countries, including Bangladesh.



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