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South Eastern Kenya University (2020)

Evaluation of farmers’ vulnerability to climate variability and extreme events in selected agro-ecological zones in Kitui county, Kenya

Kamau, Mercy W.

Titre : Evaluation of farmers’ vulnerability to climate variability and extreme events in selected agro-ecological zones in Kitui county, Kenya

Auteur : Kamau, Mercy W.

Université de soutenance : South Eastern Kenya University

Grade : Master of Science in Climate Change and Agro-forestry, 2020

Résumé
Climate variability and extreme events are some of the most pressing environmental challenges occurring in the contemporary world. Farming communities in Sub-Saharan Africa, particularly in Kenya are more vulnerable to climate variability and extreme events due to high dependence on weather patterns in their farming activities. There is little understanding of the vulnerability to climate variability and extreme events among farmers in Kitui County based on the agro-ecological zones. This study evaluated farmers’ vulnerability to climate variability and extremes and adaptation strategies adopted in selected parts of Kitui County using data collected from 341 households in Yuku, Kaveta, Kauwi and Kasaini sub-locations which represented arid, semi-humid, semi-arid and transitional zone from semi-humid to semi-arid agro-ecological zones respectively. Purposive sampling method was applied in identifying the sub-locations of study while proportionate and systematic sampling were used to select the households which formed the units of analysis. Analysis on vulnerability was based on indices constructed from carefully selected indicators for exposure, sensitivity, and adaptive capacity. The indicators were weighted using Equal Weight Analysis. Vulnerability indices indicated that Yuku sub-location was the most vulnerable to climate variability and extreme events (1.487) followed by Kauwi (0.214), Kasaini (0.085) and Kaveta sub-location (-0.530). Further, the results indicated that farmers in the study areas had adopted multiple adaptation strategies in response to climate variability and extreme events. Results of the logistic regression analysis showed that gender, education level, farming experience and age significantly (p<0.05) influenced adoption of adaptation strategies to climate variability and extreme events in the study areas. Policy measures and development efforts should be focused towards addressing the factors that influence adoption of adaptation strategies while improving the adaptive capacity of farming households in Kitui County.

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