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Met Department warns of food, water and pasture shortage

Met Department warns of food, water and pasture shortage

The Kenya Meteorological Department is warning that the continuation of sunny and dry weather conditions in some regions may lead to diminishing pastures for livestock, with prolonged dry spell highly anticipated for the month of September.

To this effect, the weatherman is now encouraging livestock farmers to de-stock their herds while they are still in good condition.

Because of these dry conditions, arid and semi-arid regions are likely to experience food and water shortages.

“The continuation of sunny and dry weather conditions in the Southeastern lowlands, Northeastern and most of Northwestern Kenya may lead to diminishing pastures for livestock in these regions. Close monitoring of the situation is, therefore, necessary to avert loss of livestock,” said David Gikungu, Director of met Department.

With the anticipated dry spell, water levels in the dams across the country are expected to remain low during this period and may therefore affect hydroelectric power generation.

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The water levels in the hydropower generation dams have started to reduce with the Arid and Semi-Arid Lands (ASAL) already feeling water shortage for domestic use.

There were cases of livestock death in Wajir and Kilifi Counties where residents are also faced with starvation.

Milk production in Marsabit County which is also under ASAL declined and there were also cases of crop failure and food shortage in Kilifi County. Livestock in Kajiado County are reported to be in bad condition.

However, the Lake Victoria Basin, the Highlands West of the Rift Valley, Central and Southern Rift Valley are likely to experience near-average rainfall with a tendency to above average (slightly enhanced) rainfall.

In an outlook released on Wednesday, the met department said occasional light morning showers are expected along the coastal strip while the highlands east of the rift valley, including Nairobi County, are likely to experience occasional afternoon showers and cloudy conditions in the mornings.

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Lawrence Baraza is a prolific writer with competencies in Digital Media, Print, and Broadcast. Baraza is also a Communication Practitioner currently spearheading Digital content on Metropol TV's Digital Desk.

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