Kitui County is set to benefit from government funds to help in implementing projects on climate change and mitigation on its effects.
Deputy Director in the Ministry of Environmental, Climate Change and Forestry, Samuel Muchiri disclosed that Sh120 million allocated for the county would be drawn from the ministry’s climate change fund kitty.
The Deputy Director was speaking when he led a team of officials from the Climate Change Directorate (CCD) in the ministry, during a courtesy call on the Kitui County Governor at his offices in Kitui town.
The CCD team who were received by the Deputy Governor Augustine Kanani briefed him on the Strengthening of Drought Resilience for Small Holder Farmers and Pastoralists (DRESSEA) project which is set to be implemented in the county.
Muchiri said the Sh120 million initiative would also involve establishment of appropriate warning systems to provide residents with precise weather forecast data for appropriate planning.
“Besides implementing water projects, this project will also promote adoption of pottery, beekeeping, poultry keeping and making of energy saving stoves, briquettes and interlocking bricks as a part of cushioning the affected beneficiaries,” he noted.
The Deputy Governor appreciated the National Government for selecting Kitui to benefit from the Sh300 million climate adaptation grant from my climate adaptation fund.
He said the project will greatly supplement the county government’s efforts to mainstream climate change adaptation and mitigation measures towards alleviation of the severe climate change impacts on communities in Kitui.
Kitui County is among other 23 counties across the country that have negatively been impacted by climate change, resulting to failure of rains, and in return occasioned the failure of food production by small-scale farmers in the county.
The county has adopted several national policies, geared towards adapting to climate change and its associated risks.
These policies provide information to farmers, enabling them to plan, make viable economic decisions, and adapt to anticipated climatic risks.
According to recent past reports from National Drought Management Authority (NDMA), 11 percent of the Kitui population is experiencing food shortage, consuming one or two meals per day.
NDMA reports indicate that upwards of 126,188 residents, majority from the marginal mixed areas of the county are starving and needs urgent food aid.
The report further adds that the shortage of pasture for livestock in the county was forcing cattle farmers to sell off their livestock at throw away prices.
The initiative to fund the implementation of the climate change adaptation strategies by the ministry will help reduce the number of people and livestock suffering from drought in the county.
The Kitui County Climate Change Unit (KCCCU) led by the chairperson and deputy director for environment Benjamin Mukulo, Principal Meteorologist Jemimah Gacheru, and Assistant Director for Environment Dominic Mumbu were also present.
By Denson Mututo and Margaret Omondi