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East Africa bloc climate service warns of higher temperatures alongside El Nino rains

Thursday September 28, 2023

The Horn of Africa will experience higher than normal temperatures between October to December, a period when the region is also expected to have El Nino rains that would lead to heavy flooding, the East African bloc climate service warned Wednesday.

The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) Climate Prediction and Applications Center (ICPAC) said in its latest forecast released in Kenya's capital of Nairobi that the higher temperatures would lead to heat stress in some countries in the Horn of Africa, which include Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia.

The temperatures are expected to hit as high as 40 degrees Celsius in some countries as the region grapples with climate change effects.

"Warmer than usual conditions are expected over the region, with highest probabilities over parts of Ethiopia, southern Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, and places in Tanzania," ICPAC said.

The institution noted that the increased temperatures would produce favorable circumstances for vectors, such as mosquitos, to grow, potentially leading to an increase in mosquito-borne diseases such as malaria, dengue fever and lymphatic filariasis. Pests and diseases are expected to thrive as rainfall increases and temperatures rise above average.

According to ICPAC, analysis of global climate model predictions suggests an increased probability that the region could experience above-average rainfall in almost all the countries from October to December.

The agency has asked the governments in the region to increase awareness of the expected rains and disseminate action information to citizens, including farmers on crops to plant and the likely impact.