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Drought damages Jiangxi fishing industry

0 CommentsPrint E-mail CNTV, May 24, 2011
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East China's Jiangxi Province embraced its first rain in six months over the weekend. The rain has given some relief to the agriculture industry there.

However, as CCTV reporter Feng Jinchao finds out, for fishermen living on the bank of Lake Poyang, the biggest freshwater lake in China, the drought crisis is still ongoing, and their livelihoods for this year remain uncertain.

Guo Yuzhi has been a fishermen all his life. Usually he will ride his boat everyday on Lake Poyang to go fishing. But for the past six months, the area has been experiencing a drought never seen before, forcing him to stay ashore.

Guo said, “In my lifetime, I have seen some arid weather. But I’ve never seen such a long drought, which has lasted for 6 months.”

In this small village located by the waterside of Lake Poyang about 40 families depend on the fishing industry. The drought has severely impacted their lives.

Guo said, “In the past, our fishermen could earn more than 10,000 yuan annually. But this year I can only expect about 2,000 or 3,000 yuan.”

A small shower fell on Sunday. But the precipitation was too small to supplement the water deficit in the lake. Although more rain has been forecast for the coming days, Guo worries it will not help much.

Without other means of making money, sometimes Guo Yuzhi and his partner Xiao Weiguo have to try their luck in the water. This time they use a long line of fishhooks to see if they can catch any fish for dinner. Unfortunately, today is not their lucky day.

Xiao said, “For our fishermen, one day off means one day of no pay. I could hardly imagine the life of months with no fishing.”

Xiao believes the drought will last for at least another half month. So fishermen must find other ways to earn money.

Xiao said, “We can now spend our savings and sometimes try fishing with hooks. The young people go to work in the cities. If the situation carries on, we can only borrow some money from others.”

Months of dry weather has left Lake Poyang less than one tenth of its normal size, and it's in danger of drying up altogether. It remains uncertain when the rainfall will return to normal and when the fishermen can work as before. It seems the only thing they can do now is to pray for the rainy day to come as early as possible.


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