How Pastoralism has been affected by climate change
The effects of climate change are heavily felt among the pastoral communities because of their unique ways of life that almost entirely depend on natural resources.
While the geographical location, economic and social status of a country dictate the magnitude of climate change impact, the pastoral communities will experience, to a larger degree, the effects are almost the same.
During our discussion, we focused on pastoral communities from Kenya and Uganda. The speakers and guests were either pastoralist or worked directly with pastoral communities. They were;
Loupa Pius: an Agroecologist from DADO, Uganda
Monica Yator: Pastrolist Development Network Kenya
Christine Kandie: Endorois women land rights
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Main take home points from the discussion.
- Drought, desertification that are effects of climate change impact in the livelihoods of pastoral communities
- Changing climate has forced the pastoralists to change their ways of lives—most are moving from entirely depending on livestock to mixed farming (small-scale agriculture)
- Climate change has occasioned conflicts (ethnic classes, cattle rustling) as communities fight for ownership and utilization of the limited available natural resources. Examples are Pokot and Ilchamus/Tugen communities in Baringo Kenya, Karamoja of Uganda, and Turkana of Kenya.
- Irregular weather patterns have provided a basis for illegal cultural practices such as Female Genital Mutilation among the Pokot community that go unnoticed.
- Loss of identity among the pastoral communities is becoming a reality because what pastoralists have been known for is slowly losing value. Pastoralists are advised to reduce their herds to manageable sizes that can thrive in the current climate state and adopt improved livestock breeds, most of which can’t travel long distances and are not resilient enough to long periods of drought.
Watch the discussion below and share your views. Below is part 1 or 3.