Slash-and-burn farming technique via Wikimedia commons/ Alzenir Ferreira de Souza
CAIRO – 25 May 2018: The latest and rapid changes of the Egypt’s weather affected crop production and likely increased agricultural land pests according to several parliamentarians’ testimonies on Friday, demanding a new strategy to deal with the ongoing climate change.
In statements to Egypt Today, parliamentarians argued that the government needs to provide alternative agricultural crops which consumes little water than the currently used by farmers to decrease the land’s damages. They also demanded developing different irrigation systems for fields, along with providing the needed instructions for farmers to protect their lands.
Parliamentarian Shereen Farag told Egypt Today that Minister of Environment Khaled Fahmy needs to announce his plan regarding climate change effects on the agricultural lands, along with setting a proactive plan to deal with it in the early stages in the future.
“The government needs to take into its consideration the climate change reasons and study how it will affect our agriculture lands and accordingly our crop production,” Farag said, adding that the same demands have been issued earlier to the government; however nothing happened.
Also, parliamentarian Ahmed Abdel Wahed said that the government, and specifically the Ministry of Irrigation needs to set a clear plan on the short and long term to face the consequences of the rapidly changing climate along with its severe effects on the lands, especially when the country witnesses long periods of frequent rains or humidity.
Egypt’s weather has been witnessing severe changes during the past period and varied between extreme cold and rain to sandstorms and high temperatures.
Last April, thunderous clouds and heavy rains were witnessed on the northern coast of Egypt, the Delta and Cairo, while the showers over the Red Sea mountain range, Sinai and some areas in the south have flooded.
Rainfall throughout the capital caused some buildings, houses and bridges to collapse; some governorates such as Suez, Ain Sokhna and Ismailia were also affected.
Many people have taken to social media and television stations to pour their wrath on provincial officials, emergency departments, and officials in charge of drainage facilities accusing them of failure and moreover called for interrogating the officials.
The users on social media sites sarcastically shared photos of drains as great inventions that hope to reach Egypt soon, asking, “Where have the drains gone?”
Later in May, the weather extremely changed and the temperatures went real high. The country witnessed a hot wave coming from Sudan. Citizens were advised not to avoid direct exposure to sunlight for long periods of time in the mornings, especially during the peak sun intensity hours.
The hot conditions have been occurring concurrently since the beginning of the holy month of Ramadan, starting May 17.