Monday, September 20, 2010

FAO official says: floods devastated crops, irrigation system, livestock

FAO Country Head Mauji Damianie has said that the recent flood damages assessment report shows that in all the four provinces of Pakistan and Azad Jamu Kashmir (AJK), an area of 1,313,756 hectares of field crops was reportedly destroyed.

In terms of losses of the crops cultivated, Punjab was the worst-hit (661 637 hectares) followed by Sindh (357,372 hectares), KP (191,020 hectares) and AJK (92,370 hectares).

Addressing the representatives of the nation-building departments and NGOs here at the Circuit House along-with Angus Graham chief agriculture cluster, Damianie said Preliminary Rapid Damage Assessment report revealed that field crops were hit hard by the floods, with cotton, sugarcane, fodder crops and rice being the worst affected crops of the current Kharif season.

The affected communities also suffered heavy losses in livestock and irrigation infrastructure, which are of paramount importance for the livelihoods of the predominantly agrarian flood-affected communities.

The report also encompasses community prioritisation for immediate emergency and relief interventions and a proposed action plan stipulated on a time scale of immediate, short, medium and long terms bases.

Out of total 415,905 hectares surveyed cotton crop fields, at-least 315,769 hectares was affected in Punjab, 99,930 hectares in Sindh and 206 in the KPK. Total area of cotton crop in 11 surveyed districts of Punjab is 1,520,817 hectares and, in 9 districts of Sindh, the area is 28,060 hectares.

Damianie said cotton is the main cash and industrial crop of south Punjab and Sindh, besides being a major crop for earning foreign exchange by exporting the raw and finished cotton fibre to the international market. The cotton crop was at a critical stage of reproductive growth ie boll formation. Cotton growers suffered enormous losses in terms of losing the cotton crop at a very critical stage of production eg Larkana suffered 98 percent loss of the crop.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2010

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