by Catherine Mungai and Tabitha Muchaba
Livestock is the mainstay of livelihood for the Borana pastoralists in southern Ethiopia. Recurrent cycles of drought are a major factor influencing production systems and livelihoods. This coupled with livestock disease, lack of market and low economic development pose major threats to the Borana pastoralist's livelihoods, who make their living mainly from keeping cattle, shoats and camels.
To cope with climate variability, the Borana community of southern Ethiopia are undertaking improved range management practices such as establishment of fenced rangeland enclosures. Read more »
By Catherine Mungai, Andualem Shimeles and Ousmane Ndiaye
In developing countries, such as Ethiopia in East Africa, climate scenarios and climate analogues can be useful tools to identify potential ways to adapt to climatic changes. Climate analogues can also enable farmer exchange of knowledge, i.e. visiting areas that show similar climatic conditions to their future farms. In the light of this, a workshop on Using Climate Scenarios and Analogues for Designing Adaptation Strategies in Agriculture in Ethiopia was prepared, inviting stakeholders that could use the information in their everyday work. Dr. Yigardu Mulatu, from the Ethiopian Institute of Agricultural Research (EIAR), commented that “as a researcher, I have been grappling with how I can contribute towards developing and implementing climate change adaptation strategies in Ethiopia.", feeling pleased that "in the past three days, I have learned how to use available climate information to develop appropriate adaptation strategies.” Read more »
By East Africa Team
Good quality climate information is vital in managing climate risks. Consideration of user needs when delivering climate services is critical. This was a recurring theme of the Second Conference on Climate Change and Development in Africa (CCDA-II), which ran in mid-October in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The conference was organized by United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) in collaboration with its partners in the Climate for Development in Africa initiative. It brought together over 300 participants from African member states, regional economic communities, river basin organizations, non-governmental organizations, and the private sector, academia and development partners.
“The key prerequisites for climate service delivery are available, dependable, usable, credible, authentic, responsive and sustainable,” said Mr Jeremiah Lengoasa, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Deputy Secretary General as he gave the key note address during a session on Climate Service Delivery for Development. Read more »
edited by Cecilia Schubert
Pastoralists on the Borana Plateau of Ethiopia are tirelessly dealing with extended and more frequent droughts, occurring at a scale they have seldom witnessed before. At the same time, they have to adapt to population growth, land use changes and unreliable climate patterns, in the midst of the ongoing struggle against dried up pastures. The common perception among the pastoralists is that droughts are increasing, in severity, and duration. They also feel that increased cropping and town sprawl have captured much of the fertile pastures, leaving little left for animals to graze on. In the light of these environmental and social changes, how are pastoralists, non-governmental organizations and government responding? Which responses are likely to be most successful and how will the various initiatives interact?
Video poster: Climate Risk Adaptation Strategies of Boran Pastoralists
By Jeremy Cherfas
While some scientists are working hard to breed new crop varieties better adapted to the predicted impacts of climate change, others are exploring adaptation options already present in genebanks and in farmers’ fields. Read more »
Guest blog by Laura Cramer, Program Specialist for CCAFS East Africa Regional Office
In early July CCAFS East Africa Regional Theme co-sponsored a national awareness raising conference at the Ghion Hotel in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia titled “Climate Change Vulnerability and Risk Assessment of Agriculture and Food Security in Ethiopia: Which Way Forward?” The co-hosts of the event were the Ethiopian Ministry of Agriculture (MoA), Climate Change Forum – Ethiopia (CCF-E), and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). Read more »
Guest blog by Lini Wollenberg, Theme Leader for theme 'Pro-poor Climate Change Mitigation' and Chase Sova, visiting researcher on 'Adaptive Capacity under Progressive Climate Change', CCAFS.
Representatives from government agencies, research institutes, development organizations and civil society came together in June and July to discuss the current status of climate change policy in agriculture and identify research priorities in each of four countries: Ghana, Mali, Kenya and Ethiopia. CCAFS organized the national workshops respectively with the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) in Ghana, the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) in Mali, the Tegemeo Institute in Kenya and the Climate Change Forum in Ethiopia. Read more »
In this newly released video interview, made by Francesco Fiondella at the International Research Institute for Climate and Society (IRI), CCAFS theme leader James Hansen discusses the causes of the current drought plaguing the Horn of Africa. He points out that even if the lack of rain is a root cause of the crisis, it is still only one of many factors that has lead to the ongoing drought. Other factors are on a more long term basis, such as poverty, which leads to vulnerability to climatic shocks and population growth, where many depend on rainfed agriculture for their livelihoods. The environmental issues plaguing the area namely water and soil degradation also exacerbate the situation further. Read more »
The CCAFS program works with a range of partners worldwide, and getting the right mix of partners is crucial for ensuring long-term food security in the face of climate change. CCAFS is building partnerships with government agencies in target regions to ensure that the science is locally appropriate, in demand, and useful to national policy makers.
A recent workshop in Addis Ababa brought together partners in Ethiopia working on climate change, including ILRI and CCAFS researchers, donors, and the Ministry of Agriculture, among others. The purpose of the event was to assess gaps and priorities for CCAFS work in Ethiopia and to initiate a platform to address climate change impacts and climate variability.
One of the CCAFS sites is located in Yabelo, Borana Zone, Oromia region of southern Ethiopia and action research on adaptation strategies, in conjunction with ILRIs' program on Index Based Livestock Insurance, will begin this year.
Partners at the workshops agreed to craft a road map for further work, and set up an awareness campaign of the impacts of climate change on the agricultural sector. They will also work together to assess the gaps in adaptation and mitigation knowledge in order to move forward.
CCAFS Coordinating Unit - University of Copenhagen, Faculty of Science, Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences, Rolighedsvej 21, DK-1958 Frederiksberg C, Denmark, phone +45 35331046; Email ccafs [at] cgiar [dot] org, EAN 5790000279012
Lead Center - International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT)