Morris Makabe – Communication Officer, ICHA
The 6th National Climate Outlook Forum (NCOF) in Kenya brought together climate scientists, researchers, governmental officials, development partners, decision-makers, and media representatives from 27th Feb to 1st March to discuss the performance and impacts of the National October to December (OND) 2022 season and present the consolidated objective National climate outlook for the March-May (MAM) 2023 season.
The meeting, which was preceded by co-production workshops at ICPAC on the 14th -18th Feb and from the 20th -21st of February with key sectors such as agriculture, water, energy, health, livestock, and disaster risk management, aimed to provide a national interaction platform for decision-makers, climate scientists, research scientists, users of climate information, and development partners.
During the opening remarks, Madam Monica Orero, the Head of Training and Capacity Building on behalf of the Secretary-General – KRCS, highlighted the need for early warning systems to be complemented with resources and support to ensure effective crisis response. She noted that the KRCS has been working to build the capacity of local communities to respond to disasters by providing training on emergency response, disaster preparedness, and first aid, as well as distributing essential supplies such as food, water, and shelter materials.
In his remarks, the Director of the Kenya Meteorological Department, Dr. Gikungu, emphasized the need to move from a theoretical approach to a more practical approach of the forecast by placing more emphasis on Early Warning systems. He stressed the importance of continued collaboration and partnerships to help mitigate against climate change and unpredictable weather patterns, particularly in the wake of five failed rainfall seasons.
Representatives of various sectors such as KRCS, NDMU, NDMA, NDOC, Ministry of Water and Energy, Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Energy, and Health were present at the meeting, which was held at the Boma Hotel in Nairobi.
The main objectives of the forum included reflection on the performance and impacts of the National October to December (OND) 2022 season, presenting the consolidated objective National climate outlook for the MAM 2023 season, discussing the implications of the MAM 2023 climate forecast and management strategies, providing a national interaction platform for decision-makers, climate scientists, research scientists, users of climate information, and development partners, and releasing the outcomes of the forum and the NCOF6 statement.
The forum’s outcomes and the MAM2023 long rain season forecast were announced during the press briefing. The meeting was an opportunity for stakeholders to come together and work towards building more resilient communities that are better equipped to face the challenges of the future.