Lower Olifants River: Economic Impact Assessment of the 2017/18 Drought
This economic impact assessment (Western Cape Department of Agriculture, 2018) highlights the economic consequences of the 2017/18 drought in the Lower Olifants River region. The details presented in this report were compiled in order to provide guidance to decision makers in dealing responsibly to this disaster by both giving context of the importance of agriculture to the region and to explain the extent of damages as a result of lower water allocation to farmers.
Water allocations to irrigators in the study area were curtailed by 76% for the entire season and this has resulted in a significant decline in agricultural production. Since the agricultural and agri processing sectors’ contribution to the economy are more than 30% and employs more than 42% of the entire workforce, the drought is affecting the majority of households in the area.