Ethiopia Humanitarian Requirements Document, 17 January 2017

OVERVIEW OF THE CRISIS

While Ethiopia battles residual needs from the El Niño-induced drought, below average rains in the southern and eastern parts of the country caused by the negative Indian Ocean Dipole have led to a new drought.

Following successful kiremt rains between June and September 2016, above-average harvest is expected in northern and western parts of Ethiopia. This is expected to improve the food security situation in these areas. At the same time, reports of livestock deaths and water shortages are emerging from the primarily pastoral areas in southern and south-eastern parts of the country. In addition, disease outbreaks and food and nutritional insecurity persist in pocket areas throughout Ethiopia.

The needs presented in the HRD for 2017 have been established through a robust, Government-led multiagency meher needs assessment, which took place over three weeks in November and December 2016. Nearly 230 representatives from the Government, UN, NGOs and donors visited affected communities across Ethiopia’s nine regions. The assessment concluded that some 5.6 million people will be in need of assistance in the course of 2017.* The meher assessment also concluded that the 2016 summer kiremt rains resulted in a return to normal meher season planting (planting takes place between June and July). Most smallholder cropping households are expected to produce a normal harvest in northern and western cropping areas. However, erratic distribution and below normal kiremt rains in lowland areas and failed autumn deyr/hagaya (short rainy season from November to December) in pastoral areas tipped southern and eastern pastoralist areas into severe food insecurity. Similarly, hailstorms, landslides and frost in some highland areas significantly reduced crop yields in pocket areas.

The 2015/2016 El Niño has left a negative legacy on many households, including those that lost livestock and other productive assets. This 2017 HRD does not include responses to recovery needs, which are expected to be captured in a separate document.

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