Not only are my Japanese abilities lacking, but my personal abilities are too.
This is a single kanji with an い on the end, meaning you know it's probably an adjective. What's the adjective form of scarce? It's also scarce.
Since this word consists of a kanji with hiragana attached, you can bet that it will use the kun'yomi reading. You didn't learn that reading with this kanji, so here's a mnemonic to help you: When things are scarce, you have to boat (とぼ) all the way across the lake to find any resources or food, as your side of the lake is picked dry.