climate change
Climate change

As adverse effects of climate change become more apparent across Africa, experts call for urgent execution of deliberate actions to contain the extreme climate further threatening the region’s economic stability.

Presently, Kenya, Ethiopia, Sudan, Djibouti and Eritrea are battling desert locusts whose outbreak is believed to be linked to climate change. The locusts have destroyed more than 70,000 hectares of crops and pasture, exposing millions of people to acute shortage of food.

Business24

Jackson Raini, an environmental scientist with Flamingo Lakes Conservation Network (FlamingoNet) said that household economies that directly contribute to a country’s economic stability are weakened in the event of crops and pasture destruction.

“A government must have a pro-active plan on managing risks brought by climate change. The realities are here with us, and we cannot escape from them. Many families will sink into poverty if nothing is done to cushion them from the detriments of climate change,” he said on Sunday in an interview.

He noted that governments should allocate adequate funds to climate adaptation and mitigation programs supported by national action plans.

“Offering crop and livestock insurance is an effective way of cushioning farmers and pastoralists from absolute losses of their sources of income apart from facilitating them to adopt climate-smart agriculture,” he observed.

Arnold Ambundo, a climate change expert, said that prolonged droughts and frost in some productive agricultural areas, extreme flooding, receding lake levels and drying of rivers are adverse impacts leading to large economic losses in the region.

“The high dependence on climate-sensitive sectors including agriculture, tourism, and energy means climate change potentially poses one of the greatest challenges to (having) prosperous countries,” he said.

“Investment in knowledge generation or research on impacts of climate change on the various sectors of the economy is very important to inform action plan,” he said.

“However, for an intervention (responding to climate change) to achieve expected results, communities will have to be involved in the process of designing, implementing and evaluating the interventions. Otherwise, they will disown the interventions thus losing out on creating a climate-resilient community,” he said.

Edward Mungai, chief executive officer of Kenya Climate Innovation Center, said that tackling emerging challenges induced by the change of climatic conditions requires inclusive awareness.

“Women and men must be both sensitized adequately on their role in adaptation and mitigation programs to ensure uniformity in progress to zero the effects of harsh climate,” he noted. Enditem

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