from MARIA MACHARIA in Nairobi, Kenya
NAIROBI, (CAJ News) – GLOBAL donors have been urged to address the impact of the climate injustice that has left thousands dead in East Africa.
Some 21 non-governmental organisations (NGOs) made the appeal as the international community gathers in New York this week for the Horn of Africa High Level Pledging Conference.
The NGOs have urged the donors to address this by making the financial pledges required to fully fund the humanitarian response and help address immediate and long-term needs across Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia, where millions of people are trapped in a devastating cycle of hunger and displacement.
“Increasingly frequent, severe, and pervasive climate-fuelled disasters, including the longest and most severe drought on record in the Horn of Africa, are affecting communities in catastrophic ways,” the organizations stated jointly.
The drought, alongside other shocks such as unusually high food and commodity prices and ongoing conflicts, have destroyed lives and livelihoods and driven record levels of humanitarian needs.
In 2022 alone, a recent United Nations report suggests that an estimated 43 000 people died as a result of the drought in Somalia. Half of them are most likely children under the age of five.
Some 5 million people were internally displaced in Kenya, Ethiopia and Somalia, including 2,3 million by disasters and 2,7 million by conflicts and violence.
Over 35 million people require urgent assistance across the three countries, with food and water insecurity, health, protection, and education needs among the most severe, especially for groups with different vulnerabilities, such as women, children, and the elderly.
An estimated 23,8 million people currently face hunger in the region.
Over 1,9 million children face life-threatening, severe acute malnutrition.
While Africa contributes the least to carbon emissions, it is suffering the direst impact.
NGOs stated the combined carbon emissions of Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia, reach a mere 0,1 percent of the global total, whereas the emissions of the G20 countries account for 76 percent.
“In other words, people in the Horn of Africa are suffering the consequences of a climate emergency they did not create,” the NGOs stated.
– CAJ News