The danger of drought is increasing day by day. In recent years, temperature records have been broken in Turkey due to the effects of global climate change. This situation also causes serious decreases in underground and surface water resources.
After the serious losses in this year’s wheat harvest in Konya, Karapınar basin, important warnings came from the experts about the ‘agricultural water scarcity’. Professor Dr. Doğanay Tolunay, from Istanbul University-Cerrahpaşa Faculty of Forestry, stated that the Turkey Climate Change Action Plan is still in the preparation stage and drew attention to the ongoing dry period in Central Anatolia and Eastern Anatolia since 2020.
‘WHEAT DID NOT KEEP GRAIN’
Indicating that 350 mm of precipitation falls annually in these two regions, Dr. Tolunay said, “Even just 5% precipitation loss disrupts agricultural production. The decrease in wheat productivity in Konya and its surroundings will continue in the coming years. Since there was not enough rainfall, the wheat could not keep grains.”
Dr. Tolunay explained, “We are faced with serious water and agricultural drought crises ahead of us. One of the biggest problems is the serious pollution in the river beds. Almost all water resources such as Ergene, Büyük Menderes, Sakarya and Kızılırmak are polluted to a certain extent. Farmers have embraced groundwater in recent years, but groundwater resources are also being depleted day by day. While drawing water from 20 meters deep, there are places where water is drawn from 200 meters.”
“Turkey should implement the measures by declaring an emergency mobilisation on water and drought. Thermal power plants in Konya and Eskişehir provinces use up a lot of water for cooling purposes. If the rough use of underground water resources is not prevented, we will experience the biggest crisis as a country,” he added…