North Koreans are being called on to prevent crop damage caused by potential floods while also working to mitigate the effects of a recent drought, Rodong Sinmun, the main organ of the Workers’ Party of Korea (WPK), reported on Tuesday.
In an article entitled “Let’s take drastic measures to prevent floods from damaging crops,” the newspaper reported that North Koreans in four different regions have moved to minimize flood damage in preparation for the “mid-July” monsoon season.
Corn, wheat, and barley production have reportedly begun to suffer from drought damage due to low rainfall on the country’s east coast, as well as in South and North Hwanghae Provinces.
The party organ said that despite heavy rain projected for mid-July, rainfall has been lower than the yearly average in most areas.
The newspaper also urged North Koreans to “continue to take measures thoroughly to supply water to prevent drought damage” as it is predicted that there will be a “severe regional difference in the precipitation” during the rainy season.
Rice, corn, and beans were offered as examples of crops which were affected by drought but were also prone to damage during the rainy season.
“When farming corn, the focus should be on taking measures to prevent damages from drought, floods and rain storm,” the Rodong Sinmun read.
North Korea was hit hard by flooding caused by Typhoon Lionrock in late August and early September last year, with state media describing it as the “biggest cataclysm” to have hit the country since 1945.
Hoeryong city and Yonsa and Musan County on the China – DPRK border were the worst affected by floods which, according to a UN report in May this year, caused extensive damage and impacted an estimated 600,000 people.
The Rodong report said that this year’s prevention projects in Tokchon City, South Pyongan Province had been implemented “based on past experiences and lessons,” a possible reference to the severe damage inflicted by last summer’s disaster.
“The basis to protect crops and prevent loss of agricultural land from floods has been established,” it said.
In Sinhung County of South Hamgyong Province, too, “officials and working people” have been mobilized to take preventative measures for flood damage.
“Officials and farmers have been taking watertight measures of protecting crops from rainstorm from the perspective that it will be too late tomorrow,” according to Rodong Sinmun.
In Gopung County of Jagang Province, a “project for improving rivers” has been implemented since the end of last year, to prevent them from overflowing in the event of heavy rain.
The monsoon season (장마) typically begins in South Korea in mid-June, with the bad weather gradually moving northwards and bringing with it heavy rain and storms.
Edited by Oliver Hotham
Featured Image: Rodong Sinmun
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