Agricultural fields of Punjab in the 2011 monsoon season (Credit: Sanyam Bahga, via Wikimedia Commons)
Five weeks into India’s annual monsoon season, the rain seems to have missed the memo as precipitation is 41 percent below average, Reuters reported. This marks the first month of the rainy season as the driest in five years.
The Asian nation’s economy is closely tied with the increased rainfall expected between June and September. Lack of precipitation can reduce exports, inflate food prices and lower consumer demand for a variety of industries.
Half of India’s farmland relies on rain for water. One of the world’s largest producers of rice, corn, sugar and cotton, farming accounts for 14 percent of India’s gross domestic product.
Image: Agricultural fields of Punjab in the 2011 monsoon season (Credit: Sanyam Bahga, via Wikimedia Commons)