Tuesday, July 13, 2021

Drought and heat prompt emergency declaration

Two municipalities in the Interlake region of Manitoba have declared themselves in natural disasters, qualifying them for federal and provincial help for farmers facing crop losses because of heat and drought.

The municipal councils of Armstrong and St. Laurant made the declarations as temperatures persisted in the 30s.

Armstrong’s council called for support to farmers for tax deferrals, feed shortages, freight assistance and compensation for additional wells being drilled.

For part of the day on Monday, Manitoba saw a little bit of rain, but for many farmers it wasn't enough to reverse a season marred by relentless heat, record-breaking temperatures and drought.

The municipality says it has received less than 40 per cent of the normal amount of rain so far this year, crop yields are coming in at excessively low volumes, and dugouts and wells are dry or drying up.

As often happens in a drought, a plague of grasshoppers is developing.