Droughts have several economic, social and environmental impacts, depending on their intensity and duration. Occurrence of droughts is a natural event and not specific to any particular region or climatic regime; it occurs in different climatic and geographic situations. Unlike floods that have limited coverage areas, droughts usually affect vast regions, causing more widespread and extensive range of impacts which can last for extended periods of time. Therefore, droughts generally affect larger populations in comparison with other natural disasters. The experience in developed and developing countries on drought management has proved that besides the level of development, the impacts and long-term consequences of this phenomena are considerable. and varied. Without doubt, the occurrences of these phenomena are important obstacles in the development process of many countries. And as the impacts of drought events last for long periods, countries are forced to expend excessive financial resources to combat its most serious and immediate effects as well as in mitigating the long-term impacts of such events.
Given the scale and increasing intensity of such events, it seems logical that a global approach is required. Such a movement must analyze the full range of challenges associated with water-related natural disasters especially droughts. This will help ensure that systematic measures carried out by governments at national level are integrated with international efforts undertaken by both governments and non-governmental organizations. This global movement will help catalyze the political will as well as the financial resources required, creating effective measures in order to produce preparedness and mitigation plans at global scale.
The “International Drought Initiative” (IDI) can be a starting point and driving force for such a global movement.