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Measuring How Climate Change Affects Africa’s Food Security
For the past 40 years Josephine Kakiyi, 55, has been cultivating maize, beans and vegetables on her small plot of land in the remote area of Kwa Vonza, in Kitui County, eastern Kenya.
Even though this has always been a hot and semi-arid region, over the last 15 years Kakiyi has noticed that the rainfall has reduced and become increasingly unpredictable.
She doesn’t exactly know why this is happening. The only thing she knows for sure is that “now it’s harder to say when it will rain.”
But farmers all over Kenya, and in most African countries, are facing similar problems.
Experts from around the world are certain that climate change is playing a major role in the difficulties Kakiyi and hundreds of thousands of other farmers are experiencing on the continent.
The report also states that “floods, drought, shifts in the timing and amount of rainfall, and high temperatures associated with climate change could directly affect crop and livestock productivity.”
All of these phenomena, when combined, may easily create numerous crises on a continent that is expected to double its population to 2.4 billion by 2050.
The State of Food Insecurity in the World report, published this year by the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the U.N. (FAO) and International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), estimates that there is around 227 million undernourished people in Africa – a fifth of the continent’s’ population.