Cabo Verde

Cape Verde: Drought - Emergency Plan of Action (EPoA), DREF Operation MDRCV003


A. Situation Analysis

Description of the disaster

Since 2017, the country has been facing one of the worst drought crises ever since the 1990s. Rains continue to be rare, and production does not even cover 1% of the country's food needs. The majority of the Cape Verdean population lives from agriculture (22% of the active population is employed by the agricultural sector, of which 82% is in rural areas). This situation leads 24.2% of the population to live in poverty and 9.2% in extreme poverty.

Farmers find it more and more difficult to continue their productive activities. After more than four seasons of considerable rainfall deficit, agricultural productivity yields have deteriorated considerably and aquifers did not recharge, which affects access to water for the population and their livelihood activities.

The 2021-2022 agro pastoral campaign was characterized by a late start and an early end to the rains, throughout the national territory. Overall agricultural production varies from low to nil, depending on the agro-climatic strata of the municipalities. Cereal production is estimated at 640 tons of maize, recording an 80% decrease, compared to the average of the last 5 years. As for bean production, it has fallen by 90% compared to the average of the last 5 years, and stands at 197 tons.

As a result, the Government of Cape Verde has declared, on 16 February 2022, the situation of national drought emergency disaster. This was contrary to the forecasts of the Agrhymet Center which predicted a campaign with a rainfall varying from normal to excess and a regular to early start for the Sahel region.

At the national level, production of fodder has been regular to low, and data show that the situation is normal in the southern islands and weak in the northern islands, where the most critical situation is in the municipality of Porto Novo, on the island of Santo Antão. The phytosanitary situation was characterized by the strong and localized attack of the “Oedaleus Senegalensis” locust on the islands of Santiago, Maio, Fogo and Brava. There was also a widespread attack of the "green bug" on maize and bean crops.

Given the adverse conditions linked to the agro-pastoral agricultural campaign, some municipalities in the country are in a situation of acute food insecurity. The results of the Harmonized Framework (March 2022), presented as part of the Regional Food Crisis Prevention and Management System (PREGEC) held 28 - 30 March 2022 show a current situation of food insecurity affecting 29,421 people in the phase of crisis (Ph 3), and 1,076 people in the emergency phase (Ph 4), mainly on the island of Santiago (in the municipality of Ribera Grande, which was the only one recorded in phase 3), and a projected situation for this year's lean period (June to August 2022) of 46,093 people in food insecurity (10% of the population) including 43,003 in crisis (Ph 3) and 3,090 in the emergency phase (Ph 4).

From June to August 2022, 4 municipalities will be in phase 3 (crisis), namely: Porto Novo on the island of Santo Antão, and Sao Domingos, Santa Cruz and Ribeira Grande on the island of Santiago. Considering the current situation and the anticipated situation, it is important to start a number of response and preparedness actions while putting in place anticipatory measures to limit the impact of the projected drought and reduce the vulnerability of the most vulnerable populations at risks mentioned above.