Lingering drought in north China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region has left about 300,000 people short of drinking water, local authorities said on July 27.
About 600,000 people in seven prefectures and cities have been affected by the drought since April, with half of them lacking drinking water, according to the regional civil affairs department.
Some 150,000 hectares of farmland and 16.4 million hectares of pastures have been affected in the worst drought in three years. About 1.34 million heads of cattle also lack drinking water.
The drought has caused direct economic losses of 229 million yuan (37 million U.S. dollars), according to initial calculations.
Araxan Prefecture has suffered the worst drought since 1961 with more than 140 consecutive days without precipitation. About 98 percent of pastures in the prefecture were affected by the drought.
Scorching weather with temperatures above 35 degrees Celsius will hit many parts of the region in the next two days, according to the regional meteorological station.