Zimbabwe is a country in southern Africa that is prone to weather hazards such as floods, droughts, thunderstorms, and more. In the past five years, Zimbabwe has been hit with a variety of weather-related disasters, with devastating effects. This article will explore five of the most significant weather hazards that have affected Zimbabwe in the past five years.
Weather Hazards in Zimbabwe
Zimbabwe is prone to a variety of weather hazards, including floods, droughts, thunderstorms, and more. In the past five years, Zimbabwe has been hit with a variety of weather-related disasters, with devastating effects. In 2019, for example, the country was hit by Cyclone Idai, which caused widespread destruction and flooding. In 2020, Zimbabwe was hit by Tropical Cyclone Chalane, a powerful storm that caused severe flooding and landslides. In 2021, the country experienced extreme drought conditions, leading to water shortages and crop losses.
Impact of Recent Storms
Cyclone Idai, which hit Zimbabwe in 2019, caused widespread destruction and flooding. In the city of Beira, more than 90% of homes were destroyed and over 2,000 people were killed. The storm also caused severe flooding in other parts of the country, including in the city of Mutare. The flooding destroyed roads, homes, and crops, and caused an estimated $1.3 billion in damages.
In 2020, Zimbabwe was hit by Tropical Cyclone Chalane, a powerful storm that caused severe flooding and landslides. The storm caused extensive damage to infrastructure, including homes, roads, and bridges. The flooding also caused crop losses and livestock deaths. The storm caused an estimated $500 million in damages.
The 2021 drought caused water shortages and crop losses. The lack of rain caused water shortages in some areas, leading to water rationing and increased prices for water. It also caused crop losses, leading to food insecurity in some areas. The drought caused an estimated $1 billion in damages.
In the past five years, Zimbabwe has been hit by a variety of weather-related disasters, with devastating effects. From Cyclone Idai to Tropical Cyclone Chalane to the 2021 drought, the country has experienced a variety of weather hazards, with devastating consequences. These disasters have caused an estimated $2.8 billion in damages and will continue to affect Zimbabwe for years to come.
In recent years, Zimbabwe has experienced multiple weather-related disasters, ranging from long-term drought to devastating floods. Each of these hazards has caused significant disruption to the daily lives of the country’s citizens, as well as its economy and environment. Here, we take a look at five of the most severe weather-related hazards that have affected the country in the past five years.
1. Drought – One of the most destructive weather hazards encountered in the past five years was a severe multi-year drought. In some areas, the lack of rainfall caused crop failure, resulting in critical food insecurity for more than 5 million people. Additionally, the prolonged lack of rainfall depleted water sources and damaged fragile ecosystems.
2. Floods – In contrast, severe weather systems during 2020 brought damaging floods to parts of the country. In some areas, rivers burst their banks, resulting in extensive degradation of land, destruction of property, and the displacement of hundreds of people. Additionally, many of the vulnerable populations reliant on subsistence agriculture were financially devastated, as they lost crops, livestock and homes in the floods.
3. Pests and Disease – Throughout the past five years, the country has experienced outbreaks of various crop pests and diseases. These were exacerbated by the weather, as the presence of moisture and high temperatures enabled the crops to become infected more quickly. As a result, food production was disrupted and environmental degradation occurred due to the need for increased pesticide usage.
4. Winter Storms – In 2019, the country experienced several powerful winter storms, including high winds and freezing temperatures. These storms caused extensive damage to infrastructure, including roads, bridges, and telecommunications networks. They also resulted in widespread crop destruction, disrupting food supply chains and destabilizing food prices.
5. Heatwaves – Among the most common weather-related hazards experienced in the last five years have been heatwaves. During the hottest months of the year, temperatures have risen to 35°C or higher, exacerbating the food insecurity situation and leading to an increased number of heat-related illnesses.
Overall, the past five years have seen a wide range of weather-related hazards in Zimbabwe. These have caused destruction to infrastructure, disruption of food supply networks, as well as severity of illnesses among vulnerable populations. It is essential, therefore, for the government to take a proactive approach to mitigate the risks of these hazards, in order to reduce the disruption caused to local communities.