Ethiopia: Drought - 2015-2018Ongoing
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)
Appeals & Response Plans
Most read reports
- Crop Prospects and Food Situation, No. 3, September 2018
- UNICEF Ethiopia Humanitarian Situation Report #8 – Reporting Period: August 2018
- IDMC Mid-Year Figures: Internal Displacement in 2018
- Ethiopia Key Message Update, September 2018
- Humanitarian Action for Children 2018 - Ethiopia (Revised August 2018)
By Issa Sikiti da Silva
This article is part of a series of stories and op-eds launched by IPS on the occasion of the World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought on June 17.
DAKAR, Senegal, Jun 11 2018 (IPS) - Hope, smiles and new vitality seem to be returning slowly but surely in various parts of the Sahel region, where the mighty Sahara Desert has all but ‘eaten’ and degraded huge parts of landscapes, destroying livelihoods and subjecting many communities to extreme poverty.
Esther Ndumi Ngumbi | Research Fellow, Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology, Auburn University
By James Jeffrey
NEAR THE OROMIA-SOMALI REGIONAL BORDER, Ethiopia, Nov 21 2017 (IPS) - Ethnic animosity unleashed in Ethiopia has displaced hundreds of thousands as well as rendering all manner of usually sacrosanct loyalties obsolete.
By Sam Otieno
NAIROBI, Oct 30 2017 (IPS) - Fostering and harnessing innovative technologies could significantly reduce the negative impacts from climate change, including drought, water scarcity and food insecurity in African countries.
By DICTA ASIIMWE
Some 8.5 million people in Ethiopia are currently in need of emergency food aid owing to severe drought
ADDIS ABABA, Sept 29 (Reuters) - The World Bank on Friday on Friday signed a $1.3 billion loan and grant agreement with Ethiopia to improve governance and fund an anti-poverty package that provides financial relief for people facing food shortages.
Read more on The Thomson Reuters Foundation
Scientists are warning that the Horn of Africa may have to endure another dry season and more food insecurity because of weather patterns in the Pacific Ocean.
In mid-August, water temperatures in the east central Pacific began to dip below average, increasing the chances that the weather phenomenon known as La Nina could develop in the Northern Hemisphere.
Philippe Roudier, Chargé de recherche agriculture, climat et sécurité alimentaire, AFD (Agence française de développement)
Countries in the Horn of Africa – particularly Somalia, Ethiopia and Kenya – are suffering from severe drought due to historically low rainfall and high temperatures.
By Baher Kamal
ROME, Sep 11 2017 (IPS) - When officials and experts from all over the world started the first-ever environmental summit hosted by China, they were already aware that climate and weather-related disasters were already seriously beginning to set the international agenda – unprecedented floods in South Asia, strongest ever hurricanes Harvey and Irma, and catastrophic droughts striking the Horn of Africa, among the most impacting recent events.
By James Jeffrey
DOLO ODO, Ethiopia, Sep 5 2017 (IPS) - Grasping its limp leg, a woman drags the carcass of one of her few remaining black-headed sheep away from her family’s domed shelter fashioned out of sticks and fabric that stands alone amid the desiccated scrubland a few kilometers from the town of Dolo Odo in the southeast of Ethiopia near the border with Somalia.
Climate changes are threatening the way of life of Nomadic herders, forcing them to move away from traditional grazing grounds and find alternative livelihoods
By Lesley Wroughton
JIJIGA, Ethiopia, Aug 30 (Reuters) - An abattoir located among herding communities in Ethiopia's eastern Somali region, known more for droughts and famine than business opportunities, is an unusual stop for a U.S. aid administrator.
Read more on Reuters
A recently arrived species of armyworm has spread to 21 African countries and threatens the continent's main food staple, maize, report experts from the U.S. Agency for International Development.
USAID senior biotechnology advisor Joseph Huesing says the fall armyworms -- transported from their usual habitat in the U.S. state of Florida or the Caribbean -- are attacking maize crops all over sub-Saharan Africa.
By ANDUALEM SISAY in Addis Ababa
The ongoing drought in the Horn and southern African countries and armyworms invasion, pose a major food security threat to the continent, official said.
The African Union Commissioner of Rural Economy and Agriculture, Mrs Josefa Sacko, said armyworms affected maize production in close to half of the African countries, especially those already under stress due to the recent droughts in the Horn and southern Africa.
"There is donor fatigue because there are a lot of crises"
By Aaron Maasho
WARDER, Ethiopia, June 10 (Reuters) - Ethiopia will run out of emergency food aid for 7.8 million people hit by severe drought by the end of this month, the government and humanitarian groups said.
Read more on the Thomson Reuters Foundation
June 02, 2017 2:55 PM
Forecasters are warning that Ethiopia could face more rainfall deficits, deepening a drought that has left nearly eight million of the country's people in need of aid.
Dr. Chris Funk is a climate scientist at the United States Geological Survey (USGS) whose research focuses on African and Asian countries. He told VOA's Horn of Africa Service that there is a 50 percent chance another El Nino weather event could form in the Pacific Ocean this year.
GODE, Ethiopia, May 10 2017 (IPS) - Displaced pastoralists gather around newly arrived drums of brown water as a water truck speeds off to make further deliveries to settlements that have sprung up along the main road running out of Gode, one of the major urban centers in Ethiopia’s Somali region.
Looking at the drums’ brackish-looking contents, a government official explains the sediment will soon settle and the water has been treated, making it safe to drink—despite appearances.
By Suresh Babu
WASHINGTON DC, May 4 2017 (IPS) - The emerging drought-induced humanitarian crisis—prevailing in countries from Niger in West Africa to Somalia in East Africa—and conflict-driven famine conditions in South Sudan, Somalia, and Northeast Nigeria, have become a regular phenomenon.
Even though these food crises can be prevented, they persistently arise due to the development community’s collective amnesia on what has worked and what has not in famine response, recovery, and resilience-building.
Pest is a food security risk in a region already struggling with worsening drought
ADDIS ABABA, April 13 (Reuters) - Crop-eating caterpillars known as fall armyworms have damaged crops across southern Ethiopia, the latest country to be struck by the pests in a region already struggling with widespread drought and hunger, authorities said on Thursday.
Read more on the Thomson Reuters Foundation
Here we are again. Famine is back. Drought in Somalia, Ethiopia and Kenya, and the Disasters Emergency Committee has launched an appeal for east Africa. We are being reminded there is one last chance to stop utter devastation in South Sudan. More and more horror reveals itself as areas are taken back from Boko Haram by the Nigerian army.
Outside Africa, across the Gulf of Aden, we are seeing the little bodies of children wasting away in Yemen.
Business in the Sululta district of Ethiopia’s Oromia region is burgeoning. So why, despite abundant rainfall, does half the population have no access to fresh water?
Towards the end of the day at the Abyssinia Springs bottled water factory near Ethiopia’s capital, Addis Ababa, workers hose down the car park liberally. Outside the gates, residents of the Sululta area trudge along the road with empty yellow jerrycans that they will fill from muddy wells and water points.