According to data from the Aqueduct project at the World Resources Institute, two European countries, Moldova and Ukraine, have the highest risk of drought globally. More affected countries, which carry a medium to high risk of droughts, can be found in the Middle East, North Africa, Asia – including India and China – and Europe.
Ukraine and its smaller neighbor have been hit by devastating droughts in the past, which majorly diminished crops. The problem of climate change disrupting temperature and rain patterns is apparent in many places in Eastern Europe that have transitioned towards hotter climates recently.
Countries at risk of drought are not always the same as those experiencing the most water stress, which is defined as a lack of enough suitable water for the use of all people in the country, including drinking. While water stress was also common in South Asia, the Middle East and North Africa, it was much less common in Europe where poor water quality poses less of a problem.
The survey by the World Resources Institute collected data on 138 countries and took into account past drought intensity, water stress, drought vulnerability, population, crop and livestock density.