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Famine + Long-term Hunger Notes What defines famine?

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Sasha Zouev Geography 11b, 11/01/06 Famine + Long-term Hunger Notes What defines famine? - According to dictionary.com, famine is: a severe shortage of food (as through crop failure) resulting in violent hunger and starvation and death Where is this happening? * Many African countries, mainly on the horn of Africa, witness famines on a regular basis. * Ethiopia, located in western Africa, above Kenya and neighbouring Somalia Dates? * 1973; Famine in Northern provinces, contributed to fall of Imperial government and led to Derg rule. * Ethiopian famine in 1984, claimed nearly one million lives which was considered as a massive death toll in any one famine. * In 1981, a substantial drought wiped out harvests. In March the Government warned that 5 million people were risking starvation because only 6.2 million tonnes of grain a year could be made, one million less than needed. ...read more.


* When a rainfall shortage or drought occurs, as in the last 20 years, the situation changes. * For example in 2005, the area only received around 35% of the average annual rainfall, totalling to a deficit of around 350 mm, * These droughts and rainfall shortages, combined with other factors such as high cereal prices, a sharply increasing population and political conflict are the main conditions that lead to famine. * That said, there are contrasting opinions on the relationship between drought and famine * Some experts claim that based on certain case studies, it can be seen that the famines of the 1970's show that drought leads to famine only if inequalities fixed into the methods of food distribution are present. * These inequalities can be lack of media freedom and democracy, which flaw the system of distributing the little food there is. ...read more.


villages and farms by the military and transported to various regions in the south What, if anything at all, is being done to help? * A warning network in Ethiopia, established by the United States, indicated in the opening months of the year that poor rains would mean hunger. * Both rainy seasons failed, meaning that crops were far below the requirements of the population. * In July, food aid was being sent from abroad to feed 250,000 people facing immediate hunger. * Serious efforts have been made to prevent further famines * There have also been efforts to improve rural transport and roads to link rural communities with the main road systems to improve delivery of food in times of shortage. * Overall, Ethiopia has not been able to overcome the major problem of erratic rains and the effect this has on national food production. ...read more.

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