DRC: Unprecedented Rains and Floods Exacerbated by Climate Change

Soukaina Sghir
Soukaina Sghir
2 Min Read
Floods

New floods have hit the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Following incidents in Kinshasa, the provinces of Mongala and Ituri, the Equateur province is now grappling with severe flooding. The city of Mbandaka and its surrounding areas are currently experiencing rising waters from the Congo River, destroying numerous homes, as reported by local authorities. This flooding, coupled with that of its tributaries, affects the entire country.

According to the Riverways Authority, this is the most significant flood in sixty years. The last occurrence of such magnitude was in 1961 at the Kinshasa port, where the Congo River rose to 6.26 meters above sea level. Presently, the water level has reached 6.05 meters. Nearly the entire port area of Kinshasa is submerged, as confirmed by C├ędric Tshumbu, the technical director of the Riverways Authority, and the phenomenon is impacting the entire nation.

The rise in the river’s water level is attributed to exceptional rainfall in recent months, explained a Riverways Authority official. These precipitation patterns, shorter but more intense, are a key indicator of climate change, along with other phenomena such as preceding periods of extreme heat and dryness. The ground becomes hard and impermeable, making water infiltration into the soil challenging and exacerbating runoff issues.

Soukaina Sghir

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