The caveat has been issued in light of overall below than average rainfall recorded in the country from October last year to May 21.
“The country received 36.1% less rainfall than usual,” it said, adding Sindh recorded 64.5 per cent less rainfall than usual, while Balochistan saw 59.5 per cent below usual rainfall.
Kashmir received 37.7 percent less rainfall, while Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab received 20.4 percent less rainfall.
The rainy season in west to south-west districts of Balochistan is over now and no significant rainfall is expected until November, the statement read, declaring that due to consistent deficiency of rainfall moderate drought has been further intensified into severe drought, especially in the south-western Balochistan and south-eastern Sindh.
“Drought conditions may further affect the agriculture and live stocks. So, It is advised to all stakeholders to take pre-emptive measures for disaster prone districts,” the PMD cautioned.
The moderate drought is likely to occur in different areas of Balochistan such as Chaghi, Gwadar, Harnai, Ketch, Kharan, Mastung, Noshki, Panjgur, Kalat, Quetta, and Washik.
Climate change in Pakistan
The water crisis in Pakistan is fast becoming a forecast for more prolonged spells of droughts in future in several parts of the country.
Reduced water supply to Sindh from Indus River has worsened the water woes for the lower riparian province. The depletion of snowfall on the mountains has led to severe scarcity of underground water Balochistan.
In May this year, a report published by Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) declared that Pakistan was one of the most vulnerable countries due to climate change. The Global Climate Risk Index (GCRI) ranked Pakistan in the top 10 countries adversely affected by climate change.
Gradual increase in temperature is expected in next two to three months which will negatively affect the agro-climatic conditions in Balochistan and Sindh, the report said, warning that the continuous drier conditions in Balochistan and Sindh particularly, may increase the water requirements for the standing crops and orchards.
Earlier on Sunday, the country’s water regulator further increased the water shares of Sindh and Punjab while also issuing rules and regulations with regard to distribution of water to the two biggest provinces.
The Indus River System Authority (Irsa) increased the water share of Sindh from 115,000 cusecs to 120,000 cusecs and the share of Punjab from 106,000 cusecs to 110,000 cusecs.