We have had very high temperatures and very little rain this summer in many parts of the country. The result is low water levels in our rivers. Many towns use water from rivers for their supply of water to houses. People who live in rural districts often rely on rain water to fill their water tanks and if it doesn’t rain, they have to buy water.
Some towns and cities have placed water restrictions on residents. Residents who have a garden can only water it with a watering can. No hoses are allowed. There are restricted days and hours for watering in some places – on certain days and only evenings or early morning.
People who have swimming pools, are not allowed to fill them.
Low water levels in rivers are also a concern for the health of fish which cannot survive if the water becomes too hot. The lack of rain in dry areas like Canterbury is worrying farmers who need water from rivers for irrigation. When there is a drought, the grass doesn’t grow and there is not enough grass for their animals to eat.
Another very important worry with the lack of rain is the high fire risk in dry places. We saw from the Australian bush fires what happens when the land is so dry. Fire fighters are also worried about the lack of water for fighting fires.
Most of the North Island is suffering from drought. This is unusual in places like Waikato which normally has a steady rainfall throughout the year. The north and east of the South Island are also in need of rain.
- restrict (v) – limit; restricted (adj), restrictions (n) usually plural
- irrigation – putting water on the land
- drought – no rain for a long time (Note that it rhymes with ‘out’)
- lack of – not enough
- to water (v) from the noun ‘water’ – to put water on plants