Climate has a key role in socio-economic development and environmental activities. It is a determinant on the space-time distribution of the world’s resources. About 90 per cent of all natural disasters world-wide are climate-related. About 10 per cent of the disasters often emanate from geological, biological and anthropogenic activities. Climate change is a serious threat to sustainable development globally. In Kenya, as in other regions worldwide, climate change and variability are driving weather pattern changes, and causing seasonal shifts. Impacts of climate mattis read more…
According to Wayua Ndumu a poultry farmer in Bishop Ndingi, in Mwala, she says; unreliable rainfall in some seasons has led to reduced agricultural activities thus food insecurity, reduced incomes from food sales, increased poverty, and scarcity of water due to drying up of water sources. Sustaining livelihood in her family has been a challenge because her and her husband has been depending on agriculture and because of the changes in climate their life changed, she says. Wayua and other women in the village decided to keep poultry as their source of livelihoods READ MORE ..
Life in this area has changed. There is an elephant-imposed curfew. The community is grappling with an elephant invasion as the animals roam freely in the morning and evening, forcing residents to stay indoors during such periods. It is at the Enoosampurrumpurr water point where the local community’s attention has been drawn to the presence of elephants which have come out of their hiding earlier than usual. At this water point, there are mixed emotions–excitement to see the elephants and of fear should the elephant go on a rampage. READ MORE
Modern energy cooking services are crucial to human well-being and to Tanzania’s economic development. Cooking remains a central part of energy transition and core to the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goal 7 and the Paris Agreement. In Tanzania over 55 million people are living without clean cooking services, that is more than 85 % of the population still depend on solid biomass fuels for cooking with 63.5% of households using firewood, followed by charcoal users 26.2%, Only 5.1% use LPG.. READ MORE
It is a bright afternoon as Ugandans await the Presidential address on Covid 19 pandemic, most people kept watching televisions and a surprise befell them. The whole country runs in a blackout. No electricity.” Power has been switched off right from Jinja at the electricity generation station”, says the radio announcement.
Reason: Floating islands on Lake Victoria, water hyacinth and papyrus weeds clogged the out flow system of water from Lake Victoria through the turbines at Nalubaale dam on River Nile causing a nationwide power blackout. For many urban households that had stocked food in refri READ MORE
During my investigation, I was surprised to find out that the so called ‘nyapus’ is a small fish used as a bait for Nile perch. Nile perch is a fish which has high demand. In a good day, the fishermen can get one fish weighing up to 100kgs and this can sell for an estimated cost of Kshs: 30,000. Because of this, the fishermen would pay dearly to get the bait (nyapus).READ MORE
Wood and wood fuels are a finite resource and their exploitation is increasingly becoming expensive and damaging to the natural environment.
Biomass has become the primary source of fuels used by poor households in developing countries who can hardly afford other fuel types. (Akunne et al., 2006). At the same time emissions from biomass combustion has remained to be a major source of indoor pollution resulting to millions of premature deaths worldwide annually.
Focusing and adapting to the use of renewable energies will in the long run help mitigate climate change thus enhancing sustainability towards meeting the energy demand for both current and future READ MORE
Scarcity is the mother of invention so goes e the old adage. This saying befits the changing farming pattern with changes in weather. Joseph Asutai is one person in Soroti district –Eastern Uganda with a passion for farming amidst the changing climate. His passion for farming since 2014 become a reality when he found 72 acres of farming land close to a water supply source in Awoja River; a tributary of Lake Kyoga in Eastern Uganda…..Read more
A shift towards having climate smart techniques is seen as a system that could enable food sustainability and provide a set of farmer friendly productive solutions hence resulting to climate resilience. For a period of 6years, community farmer groups in North East Kano Location in Kisumu County have been fully empowered by CREP-Program which is agriculture and environmental conservation based Kenyan NGO. The farmer groups are now realizing economic gains through significant improvements in safe crop production systems, food security, family nutrition, health and education within their households… Read More
Makueni County is one of the climate vulnerable counties in Kenya. It is commonly comprised of agro-pastoral community, and is characterized by high population density with majority of the communities being predisposed to the negative effects of a changing climate. The changing climatic conditions have resulted in frequent and intense droughts, that subsequently has led to lack of adequate water, insufficient food, increased incidences of opportunistic diseases, increased insecurity, water resources related conflicts, reduced incomes among the households, and these are key factors that have increased vulnerability and reduced the resilience of the County to changing climatic conditions. In response to food insecurity….. Read More
Rural communities are the biggest losers in the wake of climate change , with communities losing livelihoods and lives every passing year. Sectors such as agriculture which support a majority of rural communities are continuously affected by erratic weather patterns, intense floods and prolonged droughts.
Sustainable Environmental Development Watch (SUSWATCH), a Non-Governmental Organization in Kenya, has been working closely with rural communities in the western Kenya counties of Kisumu and Homabay to develop county climate change policies. This would enable the flow of devolved climate finances towards adaptation interventions that have been identified by the communities.
In its activities, the organization has capacity built representatives of community based organizations on county budgets and participation in other county planning meetings such as the development of the 5 year, County Integrated Development plans (CIDPs) and Read More…
An assessment conducted by SusWatch Kenya in 2015/16 on the adaptive capacity of communities in the Lake Victoria Basin to climate change, identified Wakula South as a climate hotspot community; therefore making them vulnerable to the negative impacts of climate change, such as water scarcity. Mfangano was once an island of abundant forestry resources and flowing streams. Sadly, it is now a distant image of its former glory. Intense deforestation for boat making and firewood has contributed to the clearing of forests which were the catchments for the streams that served the community with clean and fresh water.Since the lake is the main source of water for this community now, there is overdependence on the resource thus resulting in the lake’s water being contaminated and unsuitable for human consumption.As an intervention, SusWatch Kenya through the USAID-PREPARED project, donated 4, 10000 liter water tanks to the community, which were installed at Ugina Primary School. These were to serve the community of Ugina and Read more
Currently, over 100 thousand people in Igigo Community suffer from chronic food insecurity and poor nutrition due to the effects of Climate Change as well as degradation of natural resources such as soil and water, loss of biological biodiversity, diminishing arable land and extreme weather events including intensive floods. Nearly half of those affected require emergency food assistance at any given time. At the same time, about 40% of those affected are children and are characterized as malnourished. Food insecurity has a high cost to individuals, school learners, teachers and to society as a whole and has been a consistent pattern in all groups of people regardless of the income level, gender, age, marital status, race/ethnicity, or religion…..Read more
It is not known to what extent boreholes are affecting the wetland, but with uncontrolled abstraction of water, the water table is bound to be reduced and the wetland runs a risk of becoming dry land, thus losing its bio-diversity and beneficial environmental impact. Already, the impact has been felt by locals: the array of birdlife has reduced; flamingos and herons are entirely absent. Ducks are now the dominant fauna that can be observed in the swamp.
This demonstrates the negative impacts of anthropogenic factors (human activities) on the environment, which plays a key role in increased vulnerability of people and animal species with respect to adverse climate change. Thus, it is paramount that the Kenyan populace recognizes the vital importance of wetlands, so that this generation would ensure their security for future generations. This is therefore a decisive moment for the relevant bodies to work towards championing the conservation of wetlands by educating the citizens and Read more…
Over the years, the dry season has become increasingly hotter and drier. Rainfall is more erratic. Farmers are becoming aware of the changing weather pattern, but have limited information on effective strategies for adapting to the changes. Many farmers in Soroti are pondering on the climatic changes that seem to be eating away their livelihood. Their leaders are not silent either. Bye laws have been enacted as well as integrating climate change activities in development plans. Mobilization, sensitization and enforcement are a good mix for climate action to take place.The Local Council 5 chairperson (District Chairperson) Mr. George Michael Egunyu keeps a stern warning to persons who encroach wetlands” Keep the wetlands for wetlands. Avoid living near the swamps, so that when the floods come they do not affect many people. Stop cutting trees. Plant more trees.”, he states. He shows off a copy of a draft bye law entitled” Presentation of the draft forest management and tree planting Ordinance to the district Executive Committee Meeting”; he adds that Read more…
Lake Victoria is the second largest fresh water lake in the world only after Lake Superior in North America. It is the source of livelihood for millions of people living on the shores. Lake Victoria plays a major ecological role and a climate regulator in the East African region. Climate variability exhibited due to climate change has greatly impacted the activities of the fishermen in Lake Victoria in the recent past. Changes in the winds and the hydrological patterns cycles resulting from climate change has affected the lake environment hence negative effects in the fishing industry. Although the lake water quality is a function of several factors, increase in floods in the catchment areas have contributed to sedimentation and eutrophication which is blamed on the proliferation of water hyacinth. Read more…
Rachuonyo North in the county of Homa Bay is one of the areas which face famine periodically due to drought and erratic rainfall. Although the area is traversed by several rivers such as River Awach and Sare and also boarders Lake Victoria, the community members hardly get enough water for their domestic and agricultural use. During dry season, the shallow wells in the area dry up leaving the community members without water for domestic and livestock use.
In East Africa, Kenya is one of the countries with diverse economy and agriculture forms about 18% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Although agriculture is important to the country’s economy, most of the farmers cultivate their Read more…
In the tropical regions, climate change effects have resulted to increase in flooding of the river basins. At the same time, there is increased occurrence of drought in places which had been receiving adequate and reliable rainfall. Nyando river basin lies in the Eastern side of Kisumu City, Kenya. The area is traversed by River Nyando whose catchment extends to Nandi Hills and drains into Lake Victoria. It forms part of the larger Kisumu County. Most of the residents of this area are farmers apart from a few who are fishermen. The fishermen are living on the shores of Lake Victoria while the farmers are distributed along the river basin. Nyando is one of the places in Kenya which is prone to flooding due to the fluctuating levels of River Nyando. Part of the river basin is used for rice growing and the government of Kenya, through ministry of water and irrigation has put up infrastructure for irrigation of the rice fields. Although this has contributed to the management of the floods in the area, Read more…
Vernacular radio programmes are among the most effective ways of conducting community sensitization on climate change and environment related issues. Radio Lake Victoria 92.1 FM is one of the stations that is on environmental education and community empowerment through interactive programmes. Founded in 1990s, the station has been in the forefront of sensitizing the communities living around Lake Victoria on issues related to environment. Read more…
Thousands of hectares have been destroyed in Magude district, specifically in Nhongane, a village 20 Km away from the district headquarter. This destruction is directly connected to the production of charcoal for commercialization and cutting down of trees for firewood for domestic consumption. The charcoal production is the main source of family income in the community.
People from the community know the risk behind cutting down trees, however, they do not have alternatives to face their vulnerable situation. For example, Mr. Fancisco Mtene Matusse, a father of four children stated that cutting down trees it is his only source of income.
I acknowledge that we are destroying our forest, and that this drought is a result of our actions, we cut down trees for firewood and charcoal. Each bank of firewood we sell at..Mr Francisco explains that the distance where the trees are cut down is very long. “We travel a distance of about 20 km, because nearby we no longer have trees, it is a desert. And after we cut down the trees, another very painful and monstrous process takes place to get the charcoal Read more…
Just a closer look to see how much has the mangrove occupation along the bank the Matola River has grown. Practically every bank is occupied by houses, most of them with precarious material, buildings of reed, and masonry houses.
According to Luis Jafar, resident in Matola River who has been living in the neighbourhood since 2010s, people are destroying the mangrove for the construction of houses. “We are damaging our environment as we are destroying the mangrove. These houses are made during the night, and when it is dawn we just come across with these houses. Actually people know that they should not build here because it is not a place for construction, but they do not listen. The city council has also tried to prevent from building houses along the banks but they are stubborn”. He said. Read more….
As communities have sought for energy, water bodies have been compromised leading to the dilapidation of different native flora and fauna. This has exposed communities to harsh environmental conditions which affects the poor most harshly due to their direct reliance on these resources.
In seeking to find the impacts of deforestation to the local community and measures being put in place to conserve the forests, I visited Thuitu Village, in Gitugi constituency, Murang’a County, approximately 30 km from the Aberdares Mountains. Murang’a County boasts one of the highest rates of forest cover in Kenya at 14.5%, set against a national average of 7%1 forest coverage. Residents are, however, unsettled due to temperature increases. Read more….
In recent years, Mozambique has been experiencing more frequent adverse weather events. That is, there are more intense rains, more heat vacancies, in particular the city of Maputo where temperatures tend to rise. For example in the week of 02 to 20 December, there was a heat wave, with temperatures ranging from 30 to 40 degrees Celsius of maximum and from 23 to 24 degrees Celsius of minimum.
This rise in temperatures in Maputo is causing negative effects on residents. For example, there has been an increased demand for conditioned air, making the price of these devices much higher. For example, for Filipe Mate, a resident in Downtown, said that the climate has changed ultimately in the city. The lack of trees has also contributed to the rise in weather. “We are having extreme weather events. Consecutive days of intense heat, which had not happened 10 years ago, because the city had many trees, and it was even called by the city of Acacias. At moment the city has few trees. As a consequence we are spending a lot of money to purchase air conditioners. And Read more….