As we approach the electioneering period, it is vital for political aspirants to include the changing aspects of the climate in their manifesto. Whenever you travel around Kenya, you will hear complaints about the bad state of roads, lack of jobs, food insecurity and high food prices. However, there is a need to exhaustively address climate change, as it is one of the root causes of most of the issues, majorly food insecurity.
Last week, 200 experts from Global Challenges Research Fund, conducted a comprehensive research and concluded that, unless urgent action is taken, crop failures, economic shudders and loss of livelihoods will deepen in sub-Saharan Africa as a result of climate change.
Evidently, the expected heavy rains season seems off-script. This is why we need to urgently and decisively transition into climate-smart agriculture that is not rain-dependent. Indeed, climate-smart agriculture is a double-edged sword that will slay both unemployment and food insecurity. The 2021 Kenya Economic Report also talks of agroforestry. Despite agroforestry being a tried and tested climate-smart intervention, it continues to exist only on the borders of agriculture. Government Spokesman Cyrus Oguna, recently urged farmers to embrace agroforestry, and that the incoming government must also go a step further and facilitate farmers across Kenya to do so.
Another climate-smart intervention that must be part of our electoral conversation, is organic farming. The Russia-Ukraine war has reminded us of organic farming’s utter importance. Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya, recently confirmed to parliament that we get most of our fertilizer from Russia and China, and this war may see the prices hit as high as KShs. 7,000, if there will be no subsidy.
We should take full advantage of this moment, to further entrench organic farming into our society. Organic agriculture sustains the health of soils, ecosystems and people. It does so by efficiently using natural resources in enhancing the fertility and composition of soil. It is thus more beneficial in the long run.