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Kenyan scientists warning of 'intense heat and much less water'

NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- Kenya is likely to continue receiving intense heat and less water due to warmer climate despite receiving rains yearly, a scientist warned on Monday.

Peter Ambenje, the Director of Kenya Meteorological Department (KMD), said that the normal temperatures that were experienced in the 1970s and 1980s have abnormally continued to increase, hence affecting agriculture, energy, water resource management, transport, health, environment and livestock sub sectors.

"The intense heat is also impacting the level of water in the country negatively hence causing panic amongst stakeholders in the sub sector," Ambenje said this while making the March-April-May long rain season forecast for the country.

He called on agriculture and livestock farmers to pay attention to daily and weekly weather forecasts by the KMD to avoid making losses.

Ambenje revealed that during the coming three months forecast, Western, Central, South Eastern and Nairobi regions will receive normal rainfall above 300 millimeters with a slight increase.

"The long rains are based on the prevailing and the expected evolution of seas surface temperature anomalies over the pacific, Indian and Atlantic oceans," he noted.

Ambenje said that Northeastern and some parts of South Eastern and Coastal region will receive less rainfall that will start in early April.



NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- Peter Ambenje, Deputy Director at Kenya Meteorological Department speaks during a press briefing in Nairobi, capital of Kenya, Feb. 19, 2018. Peter Ambenje on Monday expressed fear that the country will experience a long dry spell until late March when some parts of the country will experience some rainfall. XINHUA PHOTO: FRED MUTUNE

According to the forecast, less rainfall that was experienced in October-November-December 2017 period resulted into poor crop failure, deteriorating forage and pasture, reduced water resource for domestic use, drinking and sanitation.

It also led to increased potential of food insecurity in various parts of the country deaths of livestock.

"The seasonal rainfall onset will commence during the fourth week of March in western Kenya," Ambeje added.

He challenged farmers to consult agricultural officials on drought-tolerant seed varieties to grow as opposed to planting uncertified seeds.

"We also expect livestock farmers to sell off their stock early to avoid making losses when livestock finally dies due to lack of pasture and water," he added.



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