Sh236bn needed to tackle Kenya drought crisis
Posted Thursday, January 13 2011 at 22:00
The country requires Sh236 billion this year to deal with the drought and other climate-related disasters.
The Ministry of Environment says if the country is to effectively deal with recurrent droughts and future disasters, a similar amount will be required every year for the next 20 years.
Up to Sh32 billion will be allocated to the Ministry of Special Programmes for famine relief.
The first comprehensive Action Plan ever prepared by the government on climate change says the evidence of a warming Kenya is unmistakable and will have serious effects on all sectors of the economy.
The National Climate Change Response Strategy published by Minister John Michuki says: “Since the early 1960s, minimum (night time) and maximum (daytime) temperatures have been on an increasing trend.”
The detailed report blames deforestation, which has affected the ability of five main water towers to act as catchments for major rivers and lakes.
The ministry estimates that the annual cost of climate change impacts, to Kenya will be $1 to $3 billion (Sh80 to Sh240 trillion) by 2030.
The document will be used as Kenya’s negotiating tool at the proposed Green Climate Fund agreed to at the global climate change conference in Mexico last year.
The Green Climate Fund seeks to deliver $100 billion a year by 2020 to help poor countries cope with global warming.
The bulk of the proposed money will go to the ministries of Energy (Sh73 billion) and of Forestry and Wildlife (Sh32 billion) with very little going to irrigation.
The Forestry Department aims at planting 7.6 million trees during the next 20 years through 35,000 schools, 4,300 women’s groups and 16,350 youth groups.
Each school will get a 10,000 litre-water tank and landowners with at least 50 acres will be encouraged to build water dams.