Mongolian herders facing disaster

Winter temps plunge

27 December 2016 | Disasters

Mongolia's traditional nomads are facing a natural disaster known as “dzud”, where frigid temperatures and heavy snow cause widespread livestock deaths, threatening herders' livelihoods.

Mongolians are already struggling with an economic crisis which has seen the currency, the tugrik, depreciate rapidly, making household goods more expensive.

Weather forecasts for next week are predicting temperatures as low as between minus 40 and minus 50 degrees Celsius in northern and eastern Mongolia.

Government officials have yet to declare a “dzud”, but the current climate is ideal for the natural disaster, said Lamjav Oyunjargal, the director for forecasting at the Information and Research Institute of Meteorology, Hydrology and Environment.

“Officially, conditions are very difficult in Mongolia. Mostly we talk about livestock because it's the main income of herder people in Mongolia, but it's also dangerous for humans,” Oyunjargal said.

Dulaamsuren, who works at the National Emergency Management Agency in Bulgan province in remote northern Mongolia, said more than 3 000 local herders did not have enough supplies to last through the winter.

“We have enough hay until February or March, but we really should stock up more,” he said, adding that the region was now under 40 centimetres of snow, four times the usual level.

The dzud of 2009 - 2010, one of the most severe in history, saw a total of 9.7 million livestock deaths. As many as 1.1 million head of livestock died last winter.

Winter began early when Mongolia was hit by a “cold surge” in November, plummeting temperatures to around minus 47 degrees Celsius, she said. By December 11, about 70% of the country was under snow.

“Already affected areas will get even more snow and colder temperatures,” Oyunjargal said, adding the east and north of the country, an area the size of Egypt, were most vulnerable.

Mongolia is one of the most sparsely populated countries in the world, and the extreme cold and snow storms of a “dzud” are a major issue for herders travelling between far-flung towns.







NAMPA/REUTERS

Similar News

 

Zuma stays put

1 week ago - 09 August 2017 | Disasters

South Africa's President Jacob Zuma has survived a motion of no confidence in his presidency, held via secret ballot in parliament.Following a two-hour debate and...

Water secure until 2020

2 weeks ago - 01 August 2017 | Disasters

With the available water resources, as well as the stipulated Windhoek water savings, NamWater is confident that the water security of the central region, particularly...

104 drought boreholes in limbo

3 weeks ago - 27 July 2017 | Disasters

The unused boreholes reported on by Namibian Sun last week were not drilled under the South African government's N$100 million donation to Namibia. That funding...

Windhoek digs deep for water

3 weeks ago - 24 July 2017 | Disasters

The City of Windhoek is hard at work to diversify water supply options in order to reduce its reliance on bulk supplier NamWater as part...

Enough water for 24 months in central area

4 weeks ago - 19 July 2017 | Disasters

Cabinet committee member on water supply Pedro Maritz said the central area of Namibia now has enough water to last at least for the next...

Fukushima trial kicks off

1 month - 03 July 2017 | Disasters

Three former executives of Tokyo Electric Power (Tepco) on Friday pleaded not guilty to professional negligence leading to the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster, though an...

'The drought will be back'

1 month - 21 June 2017 | Disasters

Minister for Agriculture, John Mutorwa, has expressed concern about recurring drought conditions globally, brought about by climate change.“It is not a question of whether drought...

Hell and high water

2 months ago - 09 June 2017 | Disasters

Up to 10 000 residents were forced to flee their homes in Knysna overnight as fires fuelled by storm winds ripped through the Western Cape...

SA storm to hit us

2 months ago - 07 June 2017 | Disasters

Namibia is also feeling the brunt of the storm that hit South Africa yesterday with severely cold conditions and strong winds expected. The system that...

USAID donates water trucks

2 months ago - 30 May 2017 | Disasters

SHONA NGAVAThe United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has donated eight water tankers to Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry and NamWater.The trucks, which...

Latest News

Local women in jails abroad

1 day - 16 August 2017 | Crime

In the last year Namibians have made headlines for being arrested in foreign countries for carrying drugs or for other crimes.Security experts are of the...

Security guard caught with N$500...

1 day - 16 August 2017 | Crime

A security guard was arrested at Otjiwarongo yesterday in connection with the theft of about half a million dollars in cash that had been collected...

Yemeni denies guilt in murder...

1 day - 16 August 2017 | Justice

A Yemeni man arrested for the alleged murder of a Malian national in Windhoek in August 2016 yesterday denied committing the offence.Murad Esmail Ali Al-Hersh,...

Tourists' road safety a concern

1 day - 16 August 2017 | Accidents

With at least eight tourists having been killed on Namibia's roads in separate accidents during the last three weeks, the safety of the country's roads...

I'm no snitch – Swartbooi

1 day - 16 August 2017 | Politics

Former deputy lands minister Bernadus Swartbooi has told people who are holding their breaths for him to expose corrupt Swapo politicians that he has no...

Opposition to communication gateway

1 day - 16 August 2017 | Politics

The DTA has joined the Namibia Media Trust in condemning an alleged intended move by information and communication technology minister Tjekero Tweya to select a...

PAAB files with court

1 day - 16 August 2017 | Crime

The Public Accountants' and Auditors' Board (PAAB) last Thursday, filed its record of proceedings with the High Court in its defence against auditor Hans Hashagen's...

Swapo members claim Mbumba let...

1 day - 16 August 2017 | Politics

Swapo secretary-general Nangolo Mbumba says he will only meet with the party members in Rehoboth when the “time is right”. His remarks come after claims...

Clampdown on wildlife crime

1 day - 16 August 2017 | Crime

An intelligence-led investigation conducted in the Kavango East Region last week recovered uncut diamonds, ivory and other wildlife products worth N$4 million and four suspects...

Load More