Books > Earth & environment > Earth sciences
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A drought is an extended period of months or years when a region
notes a deficiency in its water supply. Generally, this occurs when
a region receives consistently below average precipitation. It can
have a substantial impact on the ecosystem and agriculture of the
affected region. Although droughts can persist for several years,
even a short, intense drought can cause significant damage and harm
the local economy. This global phenomenon has a widespread impact
on agriculture. The United Nations estimates that an area of
fertile soil the size of Ukraine is lost every year because of
drought, deforestation, and climate instability. Lengthy periods of
drought have long been a key trigger for mass migration and played
a key role in a number of ongoing migrations and other humanitarian
crises in the Horn of Africa and the Sahel.
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