Bolivian President Evo Morales has declared a national emergency over a lack of water caused by a severe and prolonged drought.

Morales said Monday that national and local governments are authorized to use state resources to attack the problem.

Much of the high-altitude capital already receives water for just three hours every three days because reservoirs serving the city are nearly dry.

And Morales says Bolivians "have to be prepared for the worst."

The El Nino weather phenomenon in the Pacific has caused or exacerbated the drought, which has battered farms and cattle ranches. The country's weather service says no rains are expected before early December.