2011/2012 Yearbook Environment

Climate

Kenya, like in other parts of the world, has been abuzz with approaches to minimising the destruction occasioned by changes in climatic conditions. A number of strategies have been drawn and projects implemented in the effort to contain the impact of climate change. For instance, the Danish International Cooperation Agency (Danida) is funding a Kshs740 million ($8.7 million) “fast start” climate programme that addresses challenges of climate change. Its objective is to link communities and the private sector to technological innovation to reduce vulnerability to climate change.

Japan is funding the Ministry of Environment and Mineral Resources to implement the Africa Adaptation Programme (AAP) aimed at making Kenya resilient to climate change. The two-year programme has been designed to support the country’s long-term efforts to develop capacity to successfully identify, design and implement holistic adaptation and disaster risk reduction programmes that are aligned with national development priorities.

In June 2011, the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources in collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) asked the public to bid for consultancies to formulate fundable projects in line with the National Climate Change Response Strategy (NCCRS). Its objective is to identify at least eight fundable climate change adaptation and mitigation projects. The strategy proposes a number of measures meant to curb the adverse impacts of climate change (adaptation) and to tame global warming (mitigation). Proposed mitigation interventions include projects under the Kenya Forest Service’s Forestry Development Plan (FDP) aimed at planting 7.6 billion trees in the next 20 years.

The project will involve 35,000 schools, 4,300 women groups, 16,350 youth groups, among others, in planting the trees. The objectives of the strategy include:

  • Enhancing understanding of the global climate change negotiations process, international agreements, policies and processes and the positions Kenya needs to take in order to maximise benefits;
  • Assessing the evidence and impacts of climate change in Kenya
  • recommending robust adaptation and mitigation measures needed to minimise risks associated with climate change while maximising opportunities
  • Enhancing understanding of climate change and its impacts nationally and locally
  • Recommending vulnerability assessment, impact monitoring and capacity building framework needs
  • Recommending research and technological needs and avenues for transferring existing technologies
  • Providing a conducive and enabling policy, legal and institutional framework to combat climate change
  • Providing a concerted action plan, resource mobilisation plan and robust monitoring and evaluation plan.

The issue of carbon emissions and mitigation strategies is being addressed. Kenya is positioning itself to be the hub of carbon trade in Africa, and has moved to put together strategies to make this possible. On the other hand, a number of companies, both local and international, are jostling to benefit from the new commerce.