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Paddy fields, crops take hit from floods

Paddy fields, crops take hit from floods

As of Wednesday, 13,876 hectares of paddy fields and 4,378 hectares of agricultural crops were inundated by floods in Stung Treng, Kratie, Tbong Khmum, Kampong Cham and Prey Veng provinces, according to the National Committee for Disaster Management (NCDM).

The floods have affected farmlands in 27 districts and 141 communes, inundating 142 schools, 80 pagodas and six health centres, while 16,810 heads of cattle had been evacuated to higher ground.

Flooding also caused the riverbanks, around 6,490 meters long, to collapse in Kampong Cham and Tbong Khmum, said NCDM spokesman Keo Vy.

In Prey Veng province, the provincial town and 41 communes in Peamro, Preah Sdech, Sithor Kandal, Kamchay Mear, Pea Raing and Peam Chhor districts were flooded, while 4,477 hectares of farmlands and 27 hectares of mixed agriculture produce were destroyed.

A health centre, a pagoda, and 18 schools have been inundated, while 770 animals and 16 families in Sithor Kandal and Peam Chhor districts have relocated to higher land.

Provincial agriculture department director Ouk Somnang told The Post on Wednesday that villagers who started farming earlier this year have suffered from both floods and drought. Thousands of hectares of farmlands were also affected.

“People have completed more than 90 per cent of farming. Unfortunately, the weather has changed this year, causing both floods and drought.

“Authorities at all levels are seeking available water supply to rescue farmlands impacted by the drought. We’ve reserved plant seeds for people who lack resources. We’ll give the seeds to them through our food reserve system,” Samnang said.

The drought has affected a total of 9,561 hectares in four districts: 1,870 hectares in Kampong Trabek, 2,113 hectares in Svay Antor, 2,678 hectares in Preah Sdech, and 2900 hectares in Bar Phnom, district authorities said.

Kampong Cham provincial agriculture department deputy director Sim Thavirek said as of Wednesday, the province’s river water level had approached emergency status.

He said floods had inundated 42 communes, 4,543 hectares of farmlands, 466 hectares of corn farms, and 629 hectares of agriculture land, while 22, 335 families were affected.

“There’s no drought in Kampong Cham province, just flooding,” he said.

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