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News > Mexico

Mexico Declares Drought Emergency

  • Water reservoir drying up, Mexico, 2021.

    Water reservoir drying up, Mexico, 2021. | Photo: Twitter/ @SinEmbargoMX

Published 12 August 2021

Among the most vulnerable areas are Baja California, Baja California Sur, Sinaloa, Guerrero, Oaxaca, Chiapas, Yucatan, and the Valley of Mexico.

The National Water Commission (CONAGUA) on Wednesday declared the beginning of an emergency because of the occurrence of severe, extreme, or exceptional drought in the Mexican watersheds.


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This declaration will allow the authorities to establish transitory measures to guarantee the provision of water for domestic use, in urban cities, and in basins in drought conditions. These measures include limiting existing water rights and reducing the volumes of water allowed to different users.

Since April, over a third of the Mexican territory is facing some type of drought. This environmental problem has worsened because there was a deficit of rainfall in 2020, when rainfall was 3 percent lower than those registered in 2019. The pandemic has also generated an additional demand for water.

"Our country is exposed to different severe meteorological events such as droughts, which can occur in any region and whose occurrence drastically reduces the volumes of water stored in the dams," the authorities pointed out.

The tweet reads, "Strong images of the drought in Mexico. 1st image (April, 2015), 2d image (April, 2021). We can observe the resulting impact of drought, low water, and land use change. NASA satellite images."

Once the emergency is declared, CONAGUA will hold consultations with the authorities of the basins in vulnerable areas such as Baja California, Baja California Sur, Sinaloa, Guerrero, Oaxaca, Chiapas, Yucatan, and the Valley of Mexico.

On Thursday, the risk rating agency Moody’s warned that drought conditions would affect economic activities related to electricity, mining, and beverages.

"Despite having well-developed water management plans, industries that use water intensively will face higher costs because of increasing scarcity," it said, adding that environmental problems could even cause municipal governments complex challenges by increasing their need for credit to provide basic services.

According to CONAGUA, 31 out of 32 subnational administrative territories will experience greater water stress over the next 10 years.

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