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Droughts don’t need to result in famine : Ethiopia and Somalia show what makes the difference

Phys.org/news (OCTOBER 28, 2022)

Titre : Droughts don’t need to result in famine : Ethiopia and Somalia show what makes the difference

The Horn of Africa is facing its worst drought in 40 years. Scientists suspect that a multi-year La Niña cycle has been amplified by climate change to prolong dry and hot conditions.

Phys.org/news (OCTOBER 28, 2022)

Présentation
After multiple failed harvests and amid high global food prices, the Horn is confronted with a severe food security crisis. Some 37 million people face acute hunger in the region, which includes Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan and Uganda. In Somalia alone, 40% of the population is facing food insecurity : about 6.7 million people. In neighboring Ethiopia, the proportion is lower—20%—but the absolute numbers are higher at 20.4 million.It was not too long ago that drought led to highly divergent impacts between Somalia and Ethiopia. In 2010-2011, a devastating drought led to more than 260,000 deaths beyond normal levels of expected mortality in Somalia. Yet almost no one died in Ethiopia after a severe drought in 2015. Why did so many people die in Somalia but so few in Ethiopia ? I explore these and related questions in my recent book, "States and Nature : The Effects of Climate Change on Security."

Using the cases of the two countries, among others, the book shows why Somalia had a famine in the early 2010s while Ethiopia did not, despite both being exposed to severe droughts. The biggest differences were that, compared with Somalia, Ethiopia enjoyed a state with more capacity and more political inclusion, and made good use of foreign aid. These are factors that I identify in the book as contributing to how climate change is affecting the security of states. I include famine as a form of insecurity.

Better outcomes are expected in states with high capacity to deliver services, high political inclusion where all social groups are represented in government, and where international assistance is welcomed and shared broadly.

Source  : Joshua Busby, The Conversation

Annonce (Phys.org/news)

Page publiée le 17 janvier 2023