LIMA ―The National Agrarian Health Service (Senasa), an entity attached to the Ministry of Agrarian Development and Irrigation of Peru, recently indicated that the South American country could experience five plagues in the coming months that would affect the entire coastal strip and the Andean region as a consequence of the arrival of the phenomenon of the Global Child.
Normally, a plague is considered as an excessive and harmful proliferation of living organisms that affect the health, environment and well-being of people. In this case, Peru would experience the plagues of yellow rust, anthrax, fruit fly, rodents and locusts that would threaten the production of cattle-raising areas and the crops of farmers in the interior regions of the country.
“The rains and the increase in temperatures, which will occur with the arrival of the Global Child phenomenon, will activate the development of these pests,” said Miguel Quevedo, head of Senasa, to the press.
The official mentioned the points where each plague would spread. According to Quevedo, yellow rust, a fungus that appears in lines and attacks coffee crops in particular, would harm the regions of Junín, Pasco, Cajamarca, Amazonas, San Martín, Puno and Cusco because they are regions where it is produced in large numbers. measure coffee and coffee crops abound.
Anthrax, a bacterium that can remain in the soil and contaminate animals that will later be eaten by humans, would spread to the cattle-raising areas of the Lurín Valley in Lima and southern Peru.
According to the Public Health expert, Marco Almeri, this is because in these areas “there are spores that produce fungi and wait for climatic changes -such as humidity, rain and high temperatures- to arrive so that they can emerge.” Almeri also added that these cases have already been reported in the Lurín Valley in the past.
The fruit fly would do the same from Tacna to Piura and would affect the trade in fruits such as apples, bananas, and grapes, among others. This is mainly because “the temperature that we are going to have on the Coast will cause the ripening process of the fruits, which takes between five to seven days, to be shortened to two or three days and a process of putrefaction will take place. This It will cause the fruit fly to perceive the smell and travel long distances until it reaches the houses of the inhabitants and even the crops themselves,” explained the public health expert.
In the case of rodents and lobsters, they would be found in greater numbers in northern cities such as Piura, Lambayeque and La Libertad because “it has been reported that these species exist there and climate change will favor their incubation and reproduction process,” Almeri said. .
While Almeri added that rodents will also appear in the mentioned regions because “the rains will cause an increase in pastures and herbal vegetation that they [los roedores] eat. With more food, they can reproduce more and transmit diseases to other animals through their urine and fleas.
The Global Child
The five plagues of anthrax, fruit fly, rodents and locusts ―which will emerge as a consequence of the arrival of the Global Child― will cause an increase in diseases transmitted by vectors (mosquitoes, ticks, flies, fleas and lice) that would later become dengue, chikungunya and, eventually, malaria, as reported to the VOA the former Minister of Health, Víctor Zamora.
“We are a country that has these diseases, but if the conditions are better for the vectors, then they will increase,” he noted. The expert added that due to the collapse of the drains and floods that the climatic event will generate, it will also cause the spread of diseases associated with rodents such as leptospirosis that is transmitted through the urine of infected animals.
“We have already had an outbreak of leptospirosis in the first half of the year, little diagnosed because we have concentrated on dengue. There will be places where there are going to be massive crop losses and therefore rats are going to run off looking for food,” he said.
Zamora also warned that children and women would also be vulnerable populations in the face of possible diseases that come out of the Global Child.
“We are going to have an increase in diarrheal diseases, in all ages, but especially in our children because they will not have safe water and basic sanitation conditions will deteriorate. The El Niño phenomenon is also accompanied by cold weather, and we are experiencing it, there will be an increase in acute respiratory infections ”, he explained.
The expert specified that many women will be exposed, since they often have to cross places that are flooded. “There is going to be an increase in diseases, basically of the urinary and genitourinary tracts, among this population group,” he added.
The government of Dina Boluarte declared an emergency in 873 districts nationwide due to the arrival of the Global Child and the plagues that will appear. In addition, they announced that the different ministries of Housing, Transport and Agrarian Development and Irrigation will travel to the regions to work with local governments in order to guarantee the water supply, the elimination of blind basins, the construction and reinforcement of temporary bridges. and the relocation of the inhabitants near the basins.
The public health expert consulted by the VOA He questioned that the government so far has not revealed the measures to be implemented to counteract the pests and the consequences that it may have in the future. “We have not seen any plan on the table that is specifically aimed at vector control, safe water, safe shelter and also provision of food for populations that are going to quickly lose access to water,” he concluded.