The world has been too slow in responding to climate events such as El Niño and La Niña, and those who are the “least responsible are the ones suffering most”, Mary Robinson, the special envoy on El Niño and Climate, told IPS at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Marrakech (COP22).
Bags of wheat speed down multiple conveyor belts to be heaved onto trucks lined up during the middle of a blisteringly hot afternoon beside the busy docks of Djibouti Port.
Almost half a decade of drought across most of South Africa has led to small towns in crisis and food imports for the first time in over 20 years, as well as severely hampering the government’s planned land redistribution programme.
Although the devastating El Niño of 2015 to 2016 has now subsided, in many parts of Africa, Central America and Southeast Asia rains and harvests are not expected to recover until 2017.
The response to the 2015-2016 severe El Nino - which has effected over 60 million people from Southern Africa, to South-East Asia to Latin America - remains severely underfunded.
After over a year of extreme weather changes across the world, causing destruction to homes and lives, 2015-16 El Niño has now come to an end.
Havasoa Philomene did not have any maize when the harvesting season kicked off at the end of May since like many in the Greater South of Madagascar, she had already boiled and eaten all her seeds due to the ongoing drought.
It’s Saturday, market day at the popular Bvumbwe market in Thyolo district. About 40 kilometers away in Chiradzulu district, a vegetable vendor and mother of five, Esnart Nthawa, 35, has woken up at three a.m. to prepare for the journey to the market.
It is 9 am in the morning but the scorching sun makes it feel like mid-afternoon. This type of weather is what experts are calling El Nino; a heat wave that is affecting countries in southern and eastern Africa.
Residents in the Sri Lankan capital Colombo and outlying areas have been waking up to misty mornings of late. A decade ago, regular mist in this area just above the equator would have been a noteworthy event. These days, it is a regular occurrence in some parts north of the capital.
The spectre of famine is haunting Nicaragua. The second poorest country in Latin America, and one of the 10 most vulnerable to climate change in the world, is facing a meteorological phenomenon that threatens its food security.
Scientists say dredging, building causeways and natural climate variations are largely responsible for the flooding events that many officials here point to as evidence that climate change-induced sea-level rise is shrinking and destroying their tropical Pacific island.