Ethiopia: Drought - 2015-2019Ongoing
While Ethiopia battles residual needs from the 2015/2016 El Niño-induced drought, below average 2016 autumn rains in the southern and southeastern parts of the country have led to a new drought in lowland pastoralist areas, as well as in pocket areas across the country. As a result, some 5.6 million people in Ethiopia require emergency food assistance in 2017. In addition, 2.7 million children and pregnant and lactating mothers require supplementary feeding, 9.2 million people need support to access safe drinking water, 1.9 million households need livestock support, and 300,000 children between 6-59 months old are targeted for the treatment for severe acute malnutrition in 2017. Drought conditions are expected to peak during the dry December to March jilaal season, which is likely to lead to a sharper deterioration in livestock body conditions, and impacting milk production and nutrition status of the families that depend on livestock for their food and income. During the dry season, the response will be complemented by supplementary food based on regular screenings to ensure the most vulnerable are reached. (OCHA, 17 Feb 2017)
Southern and eastern Ethiopia continue to battle the impact of the Indian Ocean Dipole-induced drought, exacerbated by disease outbreaks, large scale loss of livelihood assets and displacement. The humanitarian situation countrywide has been further compounded by below average spring rains – the third consecutive poor/failed rains in the southern drought belt. [...] In the second half of 2017, some 8.5 million people will require emergency food assistance, some 3.6 million children and pregnant and lactating mothers will require supplementary feeding, some 10.5 million people will not have regular access to safe drinking water and some 2.25 million households will require livestock support. Partners also estimate that 376,000 children will become severely acutely malnourished until the end of 2017. (Gov't of Ethiopia, OCHA, 08 Aug 2017)
Since the revision of the Humanitarian Requirements Document (HRD) in August 2017, the humanitarian context in Ethiopia has continued to evolve which has led the Government and humanitarian partners to further adjust the HRD requirements. In the food sector the needs have been revised slightly upwards to accommodate an increase in the number of beneficiaries through the inclusion of 4 million former Productive Safety Net Programme (PSNP) clients in the HRD. In other sectors such as health and nutrition, needs have also continued to increase mainly due to the deteriorating nutrition situation in Somali region, increase in the number of displaced people, as well as the Fall Army Worm (FAW) outbreak that continues to ravage crops throughout the country. (Gov't of Ethiopia, OCHA, 19 Oct 2017)
Due to drought and large-scale displacement in the southern and south-eastern lowland areas of Ethiopia, humanitarian needs are expected to remain significant in 2018. As of September 2017, 1.3 million people, 64 per cent of whom are children, are displaced due to conflict and drought. The majority of these people will remain displaced in 2018. (UNICEF, 4 Jan 2018)
The meher assessment findings revealed that two previous years of consecutive drought, compounded with weak rains at the end of 2017 left hundreds of thousands destitute in southern and south-eastern Ethiopia. Poor pasture regeneration and limited water source replenishment for livestock have resulted in acute humanitarian needs and will reduce traditional recovery processes among pastoralist households. Consequently, the food security situation in the lowland agro-pastoral areas is not expected to improve significantly in 2018. Overall, the good harvest in highland areas, is expected to reduce large scale needs in the northern highlands, however reduced harvest and crop loss were experienced due to erratic rainfall in some potential areas. The multi-sector humanitarian response operation established over the course of 2017 will need to be sustained in 2018. The extent of needs and the corresponding humanitarian operation will be reviewed during the belg/gu/ganna assessment in June/July. (Gov't of Ethiopia, OCHA, 09 Mar 2018)
A recent FEWS NET survey in Dollo Zone of Somali Region suggests food security and nutrition outcomes have improved significantly in areas worst affected by drought in 2016 and 2017. These improvements are largely due to improvements in seasonal performance, continued humanitarian assistance delivery, and declines in disease outbreaks. Currently, worst affected areas such as Dollo Zone and much of southeastern Somali Region are in Crisis (IPC Phase 3), with humanitarian assistance preventing a further deterioration among some populations, particularly IDPs. While the risk of a deterioration beyond Emergency (IPC Phase 4) has declined, continued humanitarian assistance is needed through at least September... The 2018 Belg (March to May) rains performed very poorly over most northern Belg-producing areas, leading harvests to be as much as 40 percent below average and delayed by one to two months. (FEWSNET, 12 Jul 2018)
Crisis (IPC Phase 3) outcomes are projected to persist through at least January 2019 across large areas of Somali Region, as drought recovery continues amidst recent conflicts. In addition, ethnic conflicts in Oromia along the Somali border and between West Guji of Oromia and Gedeo of SNNPR have caused significant displacement, restricting typical access to food and income sources. As a result, Crisis (IPC Phase 3) or Stressed (IPC Phase 2!) outcomes, only in the presence of humanitarian assistance, are projected to continue. (FEWSNET, 31 Aug 2018)
Appeals & Response Plans
Maps & Infographics
Most read reports
- Multi-dimensional Child Deprivation in Ethiopia - First National Estimates
- Aperçu du Financement Humanitaire en 2018 - Appels coordonnés par les Nations Unies
- FAO Early Warning Early Action report on food security and agriculture (January - March 2019)
- Ethiopia Humanitarian Bulletin Issue 72 | 7 - 20 January 2019
- WHO AFRO Outbreaks and Other Emergencies, Week 3: 12 - 18 January 2019; Data as reported by 17:00; 18 January 2019
• Scaled-up response urgently required to more than 250,000 IDPs in Western Ethiopia
• Durable Solutions as nexus opportunity in Somali region: Lessons from SDC
• New law grants nearly a million refugees to exercise more rights in Ethiopia
• Nearly 36 million children in Ethiopia are poor and lack access to basic social services: report
• Humanitarian funding update
Humanitarian Coordianator calls for a scale-up response to displacement crisis in Western Ethiopia
A new Global Compact on Refugees has been agreed upon by UN members states. The compact will further guide the roll-out of Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework (CRRF) in Ethiopia, and across the world.
Two multi-dollar investments were made by the global fund ‘Education Cannot Wait’ and the African Development Bank in December which have potential to further the Global Compact and CRRF agenda in Ethiopia.
UNHCR Senior Officials, including the Assistant High Commissioner for Operations, visited a site for internally displaced people (IDPs) in South Ethiopia. 2.4 million Ethiopians are currently believed to be IDPs.
Betty G, UNHCR High Profile Supporter and Ethiopian Singer, advocates for refugees’ rights, with a focus on women refugees, after visit to the Aysaita Refugee Camp in Afar As UNHCR works to enhance registration data, the monthly population of concern figures have been frozen as of 31 August 2018, to facilitate the completion of the ongoing Level 3 Registration.
Since the beginning of this year Ethiopia has more new conflict-driven Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) than any other country in the world, with over 1.4 million in 2018. Of the approximately 2.8 million total IDPs in Ethiopia, over 2.2 million are displaced due to conflict with the over 500,000 remaining displaced by climatic shocks, including drought- and flood-induced food insecurity. An estimated 7.9 million people in Ethiopia are in need of emergency food assistance, with those internally displaced being some of the most affected.
UNHCR delivers lifesaving assistance to respond to the increased Eritrean influx following the reopening of the border between Ethiopia and Eritrea.
Ethiopia is experiencing an increase in the number of internally displaced people. In total, over 2.8 million people in Ethiopia are currently internally displaced.
UNHCR enhances registration data and has frozen refugee figures as of 31 August 2018.
Hence all figures in this Operation Update are as of August 2018.
UNHCR delivers lifesaving aid to respond to the increased Eritrean influx
- In August, UNHCR provided 14,800 emergency kits to internally displaced Ethiopians in South Ethiopia. UNHCR has procured a total of 50,000 emergency kits with funding from CERF (UN’s Central Emergency Response Fund).
- Ethiopian Government held consultations on the new National Comprehensive Refugee Response Strategy (NCRRS) which consolidates Ethiopia’s commitment to improve the lives of both refugees and host communities.
Ethiopia is host to the second largest refugee population in Africa, sheltering over 923,863 registered refugees and asylum seekers as of 30 June 2018.
During the first six months of 2018, 32,477 refugees arrived in Ethiopia, including 3,266 in June. They include 19,195 refugees from South Sudan and almost 12,000 from Eritrea.
World Refugee Day 2018 was commemorated on 20 June in the capital Addis Ababa as well as in the 26 refugee camps across the five Regional States hosting refugees.
Thale Jenssen | Published 22. May 2018
Surrounded by a region in conflict, Ethiopia is Africa's second largest refugee hosting country, after Uganda. In addition, conflict, drought and flooding causes displacement inside the country. How are these refugees welcomed?
In January 2018, Ethiopia hosts close to 900,000 refugees, and the number is growing. They are mainly from neighbouring South Sudan, Eritrea, Sudan and Somalia. More than 1.5 million people in Ethiopia are internally displaced.
- Ethiopia launched CRRF to further the protection of refugees and promote their self-reliance through a comprehensive and sustainable response, while supporting host communities.
- 74,392 South Sudanese refugees have been registered in Ethiopia since 1 January. The majority have reportedly fled conflict.
- Refugees in Addis Ababa continue to be L3 registered. This will ensure access to rights in line with the NY Declaration.
Consecutive failed rains have led to widespread crop failures
By Katy Migiro
NAIROBI, June 13 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - With a record-breaking 26.5 million people going hungry in the Horn of Africa, development banks are increasing their humanitarian funding to fill a gap left by traditional donors, a high-level mission said on Tuesday.
Food rations for 7.8 million Ethiopians are due to run out in July due to funding shortages, while neighbouring Somalia is on the verge of its second famine in six years.
by Suresh Babu | International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI)
- Any views expressed in this article are those of the author and not of Thomson Reuters Foundation.
During times of conflict, building robust food systems can improve access to food
About 20 million people face starvation in four countries: Yemen, Somalia, South Sudan, and Nigeria, the United Nations says. Armed conflict, combined with drought and natural resource degradation have led to the breakdown of resilience in the food system in these areas.
The full implementation of this version of the HIP is conditional upon the necessary appropriations being made available from the 2017 general budget of the European Union.
AMOUNT: 132 250 000 EUR
A World Food Programme (WFP) initiative involving the advance positioning of food is cutting delivery times dramatically. The Global Commodity Management Facility allows WFP to deliver 1.4 million metric tons of food in an average of 45 days, a 63 percent reduction compared to the previous year.
Seasonal rainfall slow to start in southern Ethiopia and Kenya
Severe drought has taken hold in parts of the Horn of Africa (HoA) region following a long dry spell. Some affected areas in Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia were yet to recover from the 2015-16 El Niño- drought when rains failed again. 16.8 million people across the region face food and water shortages and it is predicted that the next rainy season, from March to May, will again disappoint. 10.7 million people need urgent food assistance.
Since early February, rainfall has been slightly above average in parts of western and southwestern Ethiopia, much of Uganda, Tanzania, and Burundi, with areas of below-average rainfall in northeastern and southern Ethiopia, western Kenya, and Rwanda. During this time, much of Somalia remained seasonally dry.
Total number of refugees
Number of Unaccompanied Minors and Separated Children
Percentage of women and girls
Percentage of Children
WORKING WITH PARTNERS
In this issue
Implementing the Agenda for Humanity P.1
IGAD-SADC and conflict prevention P.2
The Great Lakes Pact and Rule of Law P.3
Domesticating the Kampala Convention P.4
Burundi Humanitarian Hotline installed P.6
Launch of Humanitarian-Private Sector Platforms P.6
HoA Initiative: Financing Humanity P 7
# of IDPs 11 m
# of refugees 3.4 m