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Drought forces farmers to feed cacti to livestock

Wednesday, January 09, 2013 - 01:07

Jan 8 - High temperatures and a severe drought take their toll on farming communities in northeastern Brazil. Deborah Gembara reports.

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In northeastern Brazil, signs of a drought are everywhere. SOUNDBITE: President Of São José Do Egito Rural Worker's Union, Luiz Carlos, saying (Portuguese): "It was the worst year we ever had in 30 years. A lot of animals have died due to the lack of water and pasture, I believe 60 percent of the livestock in the region are gone, and the ones that didn't die were sold." Farming communities like São José Do Egito have been hard hit by soaring temperatures. Locals here say the drought has gone on for so long that there isn't any grass for the animals. They're now feeding cacti to their livestock. President Dilma Rousseff in November discussed building damns and irrigation systems, to reduce the impact on the area, but many have given up hope --- abandoning their farms completely. They say they've lost so much already, they can't go another month without rain.

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Drought forces farmers to feed cacti to livestock

Wednesday, January 09, 2013 - 01:07

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