With the government’s declaration of a state of emergency across 16 regions, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has called for urgent efforts to help farmers survive a record period of dry conditions.
Central parts of Russia as well as the Volga region, southern Urals and Siberia have been enduring extreme heat since June, with temperatures frequently reaching 40 degrees Celsius in the shade.
Nine million hectares of crops, representing a fifth of the total area sown have been destroyed thus far, making these the worst losses in 130 years. With grain supplies for cattle down by 50%, the government is working to prevent the desperate measure of a mass slaughter as concerns also rise that bread prices might soon increase in the country that is normally a major world grain exporter.
To help offset the severe financial impact to growers, which includes the threat of bankruptcy for some, President Medvedev has offered to extend US$1.3 billion in loan credit.
He stated, “This is a big problem. There has been no anomaly like this in our country for decades.
We need to figure out how we can preserve at least some of the crops.” Our respectful appreciation, Your Excellency and Russia, for your compassionate actions to help the nation’s farmers.
We are saddened to know of the drought’s significant effects as we pray for rain’s blessings and the improved welfare of the people. Let us all join in sustainable, Earth-saving actions to restore verdant conditions in Russia and the world. Supreme Master Ching Hai has frequently expressed concern for the critical and widespread dangers posed by such crises, as during a September 2009 videoconference in Peru, while at the same time highlighting the most comprehensive solution.