Kenya launches Climate-Smart Agriculture Strategy for 2017-2026

Through CSA, women farmers benefit from the introduction of fruit trees which improve nutrition. The objective of the CSA strategy is to adapt to climate change, build resilience of agricultural systems and minimize emissions. Photo: V.Atakos (CCAFS)

The strategy is a tool to implement Kenya’s Nationally Determined Contribution for the agriculture sector.

Kenya declared drought a national disaster and appealed for local and international help in February 2017. Drought has become more frequent in the past 10 years, affecting about 23 counties in 2017. This is not surprising given that agriculture is the most vulnerable sector to climate change and extreme weather events. Media reports indicate the rate of malnutrition is above emergency levels in some areas while other parts of the country have serious acute malnutrition levels. Furthermore, a report by Relief Web shows that the number of people that are currently acutely food insecure in Kenya has doubled to 2.7 million from 1.3 million in August 2016.


Download the strategy: Kenya Climate-Smart Agriculture Strategy 2017-2026

The Kenya Climate Smart Agriculture Strategy (KCSAS) has been developed to guide investments and implementation of climate-smart agriculture (CSA) activities guaranteeing productivity and food security, while addressing climate change adaptation and mitigation. The strategy was jointly developed  by the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries (MoALF)the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (MENR) and other government ministries and departments with support from the World Bank through the Kenya Adaptation to Climate Change in Arid and Semi-Arid Lands (KACCAL) project, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). The team involved in developing the strategy comprised of experts from diverse disciplines, and included environment, crops, livestock, fisheries, meteorology, forestry, irrigation, policy formulation and climate change. The overall objective of the strategy is to build resilience and minimize emissions from agricultural farming systems for enhanced food and nutritional security and improved livelihoods.

The strategy identifies four broad strategic areas:

  • Adaptation and building resilience by addressing vulnerability due to changes in rainfall and temperature, extreme weather events and unsustainable land/water management and utilization;
  • Mitigation of GHG’s emissions from key and minor sources in agriculture sector;
  • Establishment of an enabling policy, legal and institutional framework for effective implementation of CSA; and
  • Minimizing effects of underlying cross cutting issues such as human resource capacity and finance which would potentially constrain realization of CSA objectivities.

The coordination framework and implementation mechanism for the strategy will be harmonized within an inter-governmental coordination structure which is under development and will be mainly implemented by the county governments. The strategy will be reviewed periodically to address emerging challenges and issues.

Stakeholders drawn from government, donor community, academia, research and civil society during the launch of the Kenya CSA strategy. Photo: T.Muchaba(CCAFS)

Since 2012, the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) and CGIAR partners such as the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF), the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) and the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) have been working with Kenyan policymakers to develop the climate-smart agriculture framework program (CSA-FP) which catalyzed the development of the comprehensive CSA strategy. CCAFS scientists also participated in several review and validation workshops to provide technical input to the development of the strategy. Moving forward, CCAFS and partners will continue to work with the government to implement the strategy.

Download the strategy: Kenya Climate Smart Agriculture Strategy-2017-2026

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Tabitha Muchaba, Catherine Mungai, and Maren Radeny all work for CCAFS East Africa.