• Below-average rains across most of Somalia during the 2018 Deyr (October-December), followed by harsh weather conditions during the dry Jilaal (January– March 2019) season and the poor performance of the Gu (AprilJune 2019) rains in April, has led to worsening drought conditions in many parts of the country.
• This has caused deterioration in pasture availability and widespread water shortages in most pastoral and agropastoral livelihood zones, leading to earlier-than-normal water trucking, atypical livestock movements to watering points, and declines in livestock body conditions and milk production.
• The worst-affected areas include Northern Inland Pastoral (NIP),
East Golis Pastoral, Addun Pastoral and Hawd Pastoral livelihood zones. In these areas, severe pasture and water deficits and early water trucking have been reported. The harsh Jilaal has also affected rural livelihoods in southern Somalia including Bay/Bakool Agropastoral and Southern Agropastoral of Hiran, although the impact is less severe compared to central and northern regions.
• Limited saleable livestock assets, poor livestock body conditions, reduced access to milk, increased household expenditures on the rising cost of food and water, and overstretched social support networks have led to reduced food access. Further, humanitarian food assistance levels have significantly declined compared to the final quarter of 2018. As a result, food insecurity is worsening among pastoralists in northern and central Somalia.
• Since February 2019, both upstream and downstream water levels of the Shabelle and Juba rivers have remained very low. In some areas, river beds have dried up completely, due to prevailing drier-than-normal weather and high temperatures. This has led to extreme water scarcity for riverine communities. Off-season production in riverine areas was also 11 percent lower than estimates in January 2019.