Climate vulnerability

CLIMATE VULNERABILITY AND CAPACITY ANALYSIS IN THE SEMI ARID DODOMA REGION OF TANZANIA

 Introduction

This is a report of a participatory climate vulnerability and capacity analysis exercise carried out to inform the design of a new project aiming to scale up climate change adaptation interventions in semi arid areas of Tanzania. The study assessed climate vulnerability and adaptive capacity of communities in four districts of Dodoma Region and identified climate change adaptation strategies to improve resilience and reduce poverty in these communities.

The study was conducted by six partner organizations that collectively implemented the pilot Chololo Ecovillage climate change project[1]. The partners are the Institute of Rural Development Planning (IRDP), Tanzania Organic Agricultural Movement (TOAM), Dodoma Environmental Network (DONET), Maji na Maendeleo Dodoma (MAMADO), Dodoma Municipal Council (DMC), and Agriculture Research Institute-Hombolo (ARI).

Research Methodology

The study was conducted in Kongwa, Bahi, Chamwino and Dodoma Districts which are located in Dodoma Region in Central Tanzania. Dodoma is one of three regions ranked top in the list of drought stricken areas of the country (NAPA p38). Kongwa, Bahi and Chamwino are the three least food-secure districts in the Region. Seven wards in the four districts were selected for study, in consultation with local authority staff, based on their vulnerability and resource poverty.

Climate vulnerability and capacity assessments were conducted to better understand climate change impacts, to prioritise the most vulnerable wards, and to identify adaptation activities that can increase community resilience to climate change. Assessment was done using a combination of participatory tools from the Climate Vulnerability and Capacity Analysis toolkit[2] developed by CARE International (2009), facilitated by two teams of staff from the six Chololo Ecovillage Project partners plus district officials.

The facilitators carried out participatory workshops in each district to gather information on the local livelihoods, hazards, livelihood resources and climate context. The participatory tools used to gather information in the field included seasonal calendars, historical time lines and climate change vulnerability matrices. Seasonal calendars help to analyse changes in seasonal activities and identify periods of stress and hazards. Historical time lines helped to get an insight into hazards and climate trends. The climate change vulnerability matrix exercise helps to quantify the impact of each key hazard on the most important livelihood resource, then identify and evaluate copying strategies currently used to address the hazards identified. The community consultations also provided an opportunity to raise community awareness of the impacts of climate change and how communities can increase their resilience.

The fieldwork took four days, one day per district, and involved 218 community members (137 women and 81 men). Each village community was represented by 30 people on average, aiming for gender balanced representation and a varied age range, and included village leadership and extension staff. On the first day, before splitting into two teams, facilitators worked together to test and become familiar with the proposed study tools in Kikombo Village, Dodoma Municipal District.

Table 1 and 2 indicate the number of respondents and the study schedule in each district.


Table 1:  Number of respondents in each village

S/no

District

Ward

Village

Respondents

Men

Women

Total

1

 DMC Kikombo Kikombo

15

11

26

2

Kongwa Ugogoni Machenje

17

12

29

Sejeli Manungu

15

16

31

3

 Bahi Mwitikira Mwitikira

23

9

32

Chikola Chimendeli

26

13

39

4

Chamwino Msamalo Mgunga

19

12

31

Idifu Miganga

22

8

30

                                                                                                                        TOTAL

137

81

 

218

 

Table 2: The study schedule

Date Location/District Ward Villages
29thJuly 2013  DMC Kikombo Kikombo
30th July 2013 Bahi Mwitikira Mwitikira
Chikola Chimendeli
31st July 2013 Kongwa Ugogoni Machenje
Sejeli Manungu
1st August 2013 Chamwino Msamalo Mgunga
Idifu Miganga

 

Results and discussion

This section presents the results of the CVCA exercise which included seasonal calendars, identification of key livelihood resources and climate change/hazards, evaluation of the impact of the climate change hazards on livelihood resources, and discussion of climate change adaptation strategies.

Seasonal calendar

The surveyed districts fall under similar semi-arid climate conditions, and generally experience similar seasonal calendar activities.

Rainfall in these districts starts from late November. The peak rainfall is in December/January. In February/March the districts often experience a long drought spell during the growing season, which sometimes can last for 40 days. The rainfall ends in April. The dry season in these districts is for typically six months, starting in May and ending in early November. Agriculture and livestock are the main livelihood activities and are heavily depend on natural rains to enable crops and pasture to grow and produce human food and livestock feed.

Typically the agricultural activity starts by land preparation, which involves farm clearing, from August to September. This activity is followed by distribution of farmyard manure in September to October, by some farmers who own livestock and others who have ability to buy manure. Land cultivation (e.g. ox ploughing or hand tillage) and planting depend on the start of rainfall – once there is enough rain, cultivation and planting starts. Because of unpredictable rainfall and poor distribution of rains, and the nature of the particular crop, cultivation and planting of different crops is done in successive waves. The first cultivation and planting is done from November, the second in late December to January and the third in late February. Weeding and thinning is mainly done in January to March. Crops are ready to harvest from April to June. Early harvested crops are threshed in June and late harvested crops are threshed in July/August. Crops are ready to be sold by August to September although some farmers sell their crops earlier to get cash to meet urgent needs. Some horticultural crops are cultivated from April to October using the water stored in ponds and seasonal riverbeds. In all surveyed villages there are some farmers using oxen for cultivation and pulling ox carts. Training of oxen is done from July to November.

Circumcision, wedding and funeral celebration are done after harvest from June to August when there is adequate food and less farm work. Circumcision is done in June when the school pupils are in holidays and when the temperatures are low for easy healing. The period of acute food scarcity is from November to February and it is this period where many male household migrate to urban centres and to Cheusi (a famous farmers in Kongwa maize belt) to seek work as casual labourers.

Digging of traditional wells starts from June and as the water level goes down, and continues up to November when the rains starts.

Calving for cattle is mostly in January to February where there is adequate pastures and water. Treatment and control of livestock diseases is normally done all the year. In November to December and in May to June there is less disease therefore livestock treatment is minimally done. Many livestock are sold in June to August for the farmers to get cash for buying food when there is poor harvest. Selling of livestock is also done to reduce the number of livestock especially during the years where rainfall is not adequate for pasture growth as observed this year (2013). Crop residues and hay are collected after harvest in June to August. This feed reserve is utilised in November – December where there is acute feed shortage. This feed reserve is normally fed to oxen and sick animals.

Building of houses starts in May after the end of rainfall because many people use earth bricks for building. During this period there is adequate water in water sources. The earth bricks are left for drying then building of houses is done up to October/November.

Changes in rainfall patterns may delay or hasten some of the activities such as planting and harvesting dates, cultivation and weeding as well as house building.

Main livelihood resources

The livelihood resources identified by participants in all villages are land, water, agriculture/livestock, forest, roads, primary school, dispensary and human resources (Table 4). The communities in these districts derive their livelihood from these resources. Only Kikombo Village has a railway station. Electricity is only available in Manungu village located in Kongwa district. Land availability enables the community to farm and keep livestock, however the productivity of land is limited by poor farming practices, low rainfall, pests and diseases, and unskilled human resources. Land in all villages is susceptible to soil erosion when there is heavy rain. Crops which are mainly grown are sorghum, pearl millet, groundnuts, sunflower, sim sim, maize and bambara nuts (Table 5).  Due to deforestation, poor agriculture and overstocking, the soils are bare and susceptible to gully and sheet erosion. Livestock kept in these villages are local breeds of low genetic potential. These include Tanzania Short horn Zebu cattle, local goats and sheep, pigs and local poultry (Table 6). Despite their low genetic potential, they are the main source of protein, draught power and cash for rural communities.

Natural forests have been the source of firewood, charcoal, building materials, local medicines and fruits for many years. Unfortunately, the forests have been severely deforested to the extent that they can no longer meet the need for ecosystem services.

Water is available in all villages. All the villages except Manungu have boreholes which supply water using diesel engine pump. Manangu village borehole is connected with electricity and therefore does not use diesel engine pump. Water is also obtained from traditional shallow wells that are often along the valleys. These traditional wells dry few days after the rain season, mainly from July – November. The traditional wells are often not secure, thus hazards like floods may cover them up or contaminate them with human or livestock wastes thereby exposing people to water borne diseases (e.g. cholera, dysentery). In addition water sources often dry up during the dry season, forcing people (mainly women) to travel long distances and opt for unsafe water. Other constructed resources include primary schools, dispensary, houses and road network (Table 7), however these resources may also be damaged by seasonal floods, and winds.

Table 4: Livelihood resources at the villages

Livelihood Resources

Villages

Kikombo Chimendeli Mwitikira Machenje Manungu Miganda Mgunga
Land

Water

Agriculture/livestock

Forest

Road

Railway station

     ᵪ

Human

Primary School

Dispensary

Electricity

Houses

Table 5: Major crops cultivated

Ward

Major crops grown

Pearl millet Sorghum Maize Gnuts Sunflower Simsim Bambara nuts Rice
Kikombo
Sejeli
Ugogoni
Msamalo
Idifu
Mwitikira
Chikola

Table 5a: Possession of farm implements

Wards

Farm implements

Oxen Ploughs Power tiller Tractors Ox carts
Kikombo 158 153 0 0 72
Sejeli 580 432 9 20 362
Ugogoni 60 54 2 0 58
Msamalo 518 259 2 2 269
Idifu 552 276 0 0 34
Mwitikira
Chikola 844 396 0 0 58

Table 6: Livestock population

Wards

Livestock type

Cattle Goats Sheep Donkey Chicken Pigs
Kikombo 1802 3900 290 11 865 85
Sejeli 7,434 4,521 1580 17 24,684 177
Ugogoni 3,701 4,465 2087 487 1,990 165
Msamalo 5,687 3,731 1,362 230 20,368 109
Idifu 5,263 149 1676 277 1866 322
Mwitikira 6,092 3,029 557 185
Chikola 13,942 7,006 7,701 334 6,860 117

Source: WEO (2013)

Table 7: Social Services

Ward
Health centre Dispensary Ventenary centre Primary school Secondary School Cattle dip Extension officer Borehole NGO Tel
Kikombo 1 1 0 2 1 1 2 2 6 1
Sejeli 0 2 0 1 1 1 5 1 3 1
Ugogoni 1 3 0 5 2 0 4 1 0 1
Msamalo 0 3 0 5 1 1 3 3 2 1
Idifu 0 2 0 3 1 0 1 3 1 1
Mwitikira 1 2 0 2 1 1 2 2 3 1
Chikola 1 3 0 3 1 1 3 3 2 1

 

Table 8: Population characteristics of the surveyed wards

District Ward Number of Villages HH HHSize Population
Dodoma Municipal Kikombo 2

1,940

4.3

8,343

Kongwa Sejeli 5

4,063

4.7

19,097

Ugogoni 6

2,410

5.0

12,048

Chamwino Msamalo 3

3,214

4.4

14,142

Idifu 2

2,089

4.6

9,609

Bahi Mwitikira 2

1,644

4.4

7,235

Chikola 3

3,106

4.4

13,668

Source: URT (2013)

 

Hazards identified in surveyed villages

The impacts of climate change in the surveyed villages are indicated in Table 10.

Drought/unpredictable rains, deforestation and diseases are the major hazards reported in the villages. Triangulated data from other studies in Tanzania such as Risks, Vulnerability and Capacity Assessment for Chamwino District, Dodoma (PMO, 2012) and the Disaster Risks and Capacity Needs Assessment for Mainland Tanzania (2008) identified similar hazards such as drought, pests and epidemics as the main hazards affecting the central plateau agro ecological zone.

The average rainfall in Dodoma region ranges from 500 – 800mm. Data recorded from Dodoma airport meteorological station from year 1980 – 2013 indicates that years with less than 500mm rainfall (dry years) were observed to be 1981, 1986, 1988, 1992, 1998, 2003, 2005, 2010. In most cases drought affect the whole villages, lasting for months (Figure 1). In the year 2012/13 drought was acute in almost all Dodoma region and rainfall was below 500mm. Rainfall data recorded in Bahi-Chikola ward, Dodoma Municipal and Kongwa shows that rainfall in Dodoma region was below 500mm and was poorly distributed – it rained at average of 32 days only (Table 9). This has resulted in serious food shortage in many areas of the region.

In all surveyed villages it was noted that drought has significant impact on agriculture (crops and livestock), water, forest and human resources. Drought had low impact on land (Table 10). Historical timeline (Table 11) indicates that years with acute drought were accompanied with hunger, as the majority (>90%) of the community in semi-arid central Tanzania depend on rain fed agriculture. Failure of rainfall results in crop failure / low productivity, significantly reducing food production. In all surveyed villages food harvested can only suffice 6 – 9 months. Food insecurity is acute from December to February.

 

Figure 1: Annual rainfall from 1980 – 2010

 

 

Table 9: Rainfall in year 2012/2013 in some locations in Dodoma region

Location Number of rain days Amount (mm)
Kongwa district 29 481.3
Dodoma Municipal 39 476.5
Bahi – Chikola 28 437.9
Average 32 465.2

 

 

 

Table 10: Major climate change hazards to livelihood resources

Impact/hazards

Villages

Kikombo Chimendeli Mwitikira Machenje Manungu Miganda Mgunga
Drought and unpredictable rains

Deforestation

Diseases

Strong winds

Birds

Pests

Soil erosion

Bush fire

Lack of education

Salt water

Overgrazing

Floods

Table 11: Historical time lines

Year

Village

Kikombo

Chimendeli

Mwitikira

Machenje

Manungu

Miganga

Mgunga

2013

Drought, hunger Drought, pests,  hunger Drought, hunger Drought, hunger Drought, hunger

2012

Drought, hunger

2011

Quelaquelea birds

2009

Political conflicts

2007

RVF RVF RVF RVF

2006

Death of livestock, hunger and drought Drought, hunger, death of livestock Drought, hunger, livestock diseases Drought, hunger

2004

Train accident Drought, hunger Pests

1999

Drought, hunger

1997/98

Elinino, dysentery, pests Elinino, floods Elnino, Floods, hunger, pests Elinino, floods hunger Elnino, Floods, hunger, pests

1994

Queleaquelea, hunger Meningitis

1993

Drought and hunger

1992

Drought, hunger

1990

Measles and Meningitis 

1989

Malaria/ death of children Good harvests

1987

Train and car accident

1984

Drought, hunger – 

1981

Hanger , army warms

1980

Child deaths due to malaria Dysentery, death of people

1978

Stress on Army camp from South Africa

1975

Dysentery, death of people

1974

Ujamaa villages, pests

1973

Queleaquelea

1971/72

Hunger, army warms

1969

Drought, hunger

1966

Drought, hunger

1964

Drought, hunger

1963

Drought and hunger

1953-1959

Drought and hunger

1952

Drought, hunger

1953

Drought and hunger

1947

Drought, pests and hunger

1943

Drought and hunger

The impacts of climate change/hazards on the key livelihood resources

Deforestation, drought, and diseases are the main hazards affecting the livelihood resources in all surveyed villages (Table 12). Other hazards include unreliable rainfall, strong winds, pests, soil erosion, overgrazing, poor education, seasonal floods and bush fire.

The communities pinpointed deforestation as a major hazard affecting all the livelihood resources. Cutting trees for charcoal, fuel wood and building materials for sale, as well as overgrazing, are the reported causes of deforestation. This deforestation has resulted in soil erosion, scarcity of firewood and building materials as well as drying up of water sources. The communities in the surveyed villages recognise a link between forests and rainfall and consider that severe deforestation has resulted in less rainfall. For them, deforestation has seriously affected their livelihood resources.

Drought is the second most important hazard that significantly affects livelihood resources in the surveyed villages. Drought has a significant effect on water availability, agriculture (crops and livestock) and the human population.

Diseases (both humans and livestock diseases) are reported to have a moderate effect on the livelihood resources. They include nutritional diseases due to acute food shortage and occasional water borne diseases (e.g. diarrhoea and dysentery).


Table 12: Climate change vulnerability matrix

Village

Livelihood Resource 

 

Hazards

Drought

Deforestation (Charcoal & firewood)

Unreliable rainfall

Diseases

Strong wind

Pests

Soil erosion

Over grazing

Ignorance

Floods

Bush fire

Kikombo

Land

1

3

1

0

1

N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M
Forest

3

3

1

0

2

N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M
Water

3

3

2

2

1

N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M
Agriculture/ livestock

3

3

3

3

2

N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M
Human

3

3

2

3

2

N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M
Average

2.6

3

1.8

1.6

1.6

N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M

Chimendeli

Land

1

2

N/M

0

N/M

2

2

N/M N/M N/M N/M
Forest

3

3

N/M

1

N/M

1

1

N/M N/M N/M N/M
Water

3

3

N/M

1

N/M

0

2

N/M N/M N/M N/M
Agriculture/ livestock

3

3

N/M

2

N/M

2

2

N/M N/M N/M N/M
Human

3

3

N/M

2

N/M

0

2

N/M N/M N/M N/M
Local Institutions

2

1

N/M

0

N/M

0

2

N/M N/M N/M N/M
Average

2.5

2.5

N/M

1

NM

0.8

1.8

N/M N/M N/M N/M

Mwitikira

Land

1

3

N/M

0

N/M

0

N/M N/M N/M N/M

3

Forest

3

3

N/M

1

N/M

1

N/M N/M N/M N/M

3

Water

3

3

N/M

2

N/M

0

N/M N/M N/M N/M

2

Agriculture/ livestock

3

3

N/M

2

N/M

2

N/M N/M N/M N/M

3

Human

3

3

N/M

3

N/M

1

N/M N/M N/M N/M

2

Average

2.6

3

N/M

1.6

N/M

0.8

N/M N/M N/M N/M

2.6

Machenje

Land

1

2

N/M

0

N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M

N/M

Forest

2

3

N/M

0

N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M
Water

3

2

N/M

1

N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M
Agriculture/ livestock

3

2

N/M

1

N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M
Human

3

3

N/M

2

N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M
Average

2.4

2.4

N/M

0.8

N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M

Manungu

Land

1

3

N/M

0

N/M

0

N/M

3

2

N/M N/M
Forest

3

3

N/M

1

N/M

0

N/M

2

2

N/M N/M
Water

3

3

N/M

1

N/M

0

N/M

1

3

N/M N/M
Agriculture/ livestock

3

3

N/M

2

N/M

3

N/M

3

3

N/M N/M
Human

3

3

N/M

3

N/M

2

N/M

2

3

N/M N/M
Average

2.6

3

N/M

1.4

N/M

1

N/M

2.2

2.6

N/M N/M

Miganga

Land

1

3

N/M

0

N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M

1

N/M
Forest

2

3

N/M

0

N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M

1

N/M
Water

3

3

N/M

2

N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M

1

N/M
Agriculture/ livestock

3

2

N/M

2

N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M

1

N/M
Road infrastructure

1

3

N/M

0

N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M

3

N/M
Average

2.0

2.8

N/M

0.8

N/M N/M N/M N/M N/M

1.4

N/M

Mgunga

Land

1

3

N/M

0

N/M

0

N/M N/M

2

N/M N/M
Forest

3

3

N/M

1

N/M

1

N/M N/M

3

N/M N/M
Water

3

2

N/M

1

N/M

1

N/M N/M

2

N/M N/M
Agriculture/ livestock

3

2

N/M

2

N/M

2

N/M N/M

2

N/M N/M
Human

3

3

N/M

2

N/M

2

N/M N/M

2

N/M N/M
    2.6

2.6

N/M

1.2

N/M

1.2

N/M N/M

2.2

N/M N/M

Key      3 = Significant impact on the resource      2 = Medium impact on the resource

1 = Low impact on the resource                0 = No impact on the resource

N/M = Not Mentioned

Local climate change adaptation practices

Communities have adopted a range of strategies – innovations, practices and coping mechanisms – in response to the effects of climate change (Table 13).

Table 13: Local climate change adaptation practices by farming communities

District

Adopted strategies

Effectiveness

Dodoma municipality
  • Early planting
  • Planting at different times
  • Farm yard manure application
  • Intercropping
  • Use of drought resistant crops.
  • Use of early maturing varieties
  • Food loans “Songoleda”
  • Labour selling
  • Livestock temporal movement
  • Government and non-government food relief
  • Use of traditional wells
The effectiveness level (in terms of food sufficiency) of employed strategies is only 30%.Only 1 village (Kikombo) assessed
Bahi District
  • Afforestation
  • FYM application
  • Use of proper spacing
  • Use of traditional wells.
  • Controlled charcoal business
  • Ox-plough tillage.
  • Early planting
  • Planting time isolations
On average, effectiveness level (in terms of food sufficiency) of employed strategies is 40%.
Kongwa District
  • Planting of drought resistant crops/varieties
    • Labour selling
    • Charcoal making
    • Afforestation
    • Use of traditional wells
    • Fetching water from nearby villages
    • Land tillage
    • Use of FYM
    • Use of early maturing varieties
    • Intercropping
    • Plating time and location isolations
    • Livestock feed storage
    • Livestock temporal movement
On average, effectiveness level (in terms of food sufficiency) of employed strategies is 52.5%.Two villages assessed each with food sufficiency level as follows

Manungu= 75%

Machenje = 30%

Chamwino District
  • Labour selling
  • Use of drought resistant crops
  • Use of by-laws
  • Charcoal making
  • Food reserve
  • FYM uses
On average, effectiveness level (in terms of food sufficiency) of employed strategies is 40%.Two villages assessed each with food sufficiency level as follows

Mgunga= 50%

Miganga = 30%

 

In short, the adopted strategies can be grouped into the following categories

  • Use of agro-ecological specific agronomic practices
  • Use of improved crop varieties
  • Use of animal power in farming activities
  • Engagement in petty businesses
  • Use of accessible and affordable alternative resources

However, adopted strategies cumulatively haven’t reached optimal levels of effectiveness because of some limiting factors including;

i.         Weaknesses in enforcement of local government established by-laws to protect environment degradation

ii.         Ineffective functioning of legally established bodies (committees) for safeguarding communities interests.

iii.         Low adoption and utility levels of introduced technologies in some of assessed areas. For instance, observed low uses of energy saving stoves introduced by other projects in Mgunga and Manungu villages.

   iv.         Poor combination of adopted strategies at individual/family level to bring significant desired results. For example all villages in the surveyed wards there was sensitization of using drought power for cultivation but there are few village farmer who use drought animals for cultivation. Local traditional farming (kuberega) is still widely practiced and is the main source of crop failure in case of acute drought.


Conclusion

Tanzania is predicted to warm by 2 – 40C by 2100. The inner parts of the country are likely to experience higher temperature increases than the coastal areas and cold and dry seasons will warm more than warm and wet seasons. Rainfall is predicted to decrease by 0 – 20% in the central parts of the country. In contrast, rainfall may increase by 25 – 50% in the north east and the lake Victoria basin. Changes in the mean temperature, rainfall patterns and rainfall variability are likely to prolong dry seasons and to increase severity of periodic droughts. This will be pronounced in the interior part of the country, which will experience higher temperature increases and reduced rainfall (See Clark, Webster and Cole, 2003; IPCC, 2001).

Rural communities in Dodoma, in semi-arid central Tanzania, are aware of climate change and have considerable experience of the impacts of drought. They have tried various strategies (Table 13) to overcome the impacts of climate change but with limited / differing levels of success. The poor performance of such strategies is mainly attributed to poverty, weak institutional capacity, and low take-up of improved technology. This has resulted in frequent hunger / food insecurity. Such conditions are anticipated to worsen in future as climate change challenges increase as predicted, unless adaptation strategies are improved.

Proposed new climate change adaptation in semi-arid areas

The following interventions are proposed to increase the adaptive capacity of vulnerable communities of semi-arid areas of Central Tanzania:-

  • Education on CC adaptation practices
  • Afforestation / reforestation
  • Sensitization of communities on adoption and use of newly introduced technologies
  • Introduction of alternative energy (e.g. energy saving stoves, solar, wind)
  • Enforcement of established environmental by-laws
  • Strengthening established bodies such as environmental committees
  • Improved agriculture practices (e.g. improved seeds, GAP)
  • Education and inputs on use of animal power in agriculture
  • Introduction of improved livestock breeds (cattle, goats and chicken) for high production potential
  • Improved livestock disease control and management
  • Small irrigation schemes
  • Rain water harvesting, roof catchment, charko dams, sub surface dams
  • Increased use of farmyard manure
  • Pasture establishment
  • Modern beekeeping
  • Leather making

 

Barriers to success

Financial capability

Given the fact that the majority of the population in the rural areas in the districts surveyed are engaged in agriculture as their main source of livelihood and income, and given the susceptibility of agriculture to drought that was identified as the main hazard, it follows that the vulnerability of the agriculture sector is high, exacerbating rural poverty. Field data reported by PMO (2012) indicates that the income of the majority of households in semi-arid central Tanzania is between 10,000shs and 50,000shs per month (less than 1 Dollar per day per household), which is not enough to enable communities to invest in climate change adaptation technologies. Lack of access to capital / finance is clearly a barrier to the uptake of adaptation innovations, suggesting that scalable technologies must be low cost, and access to microfinance needs to be improved.

Technical skills

The majority of farmers in the surveyed villages use traditional practices in agriculture. The community’s resistance to change, perhaps due to cultural traditions and aversion to risk, hinders the uptake of improved agricultural practices. During the survey in Manungu in and Minganga village it was found that village communities were empowered on the use of drought resistant seed (sorghum – macia variety) and use of improved energy saving stoves but they were unwilling to use them because they are used to growing maize and using traditional stoves. Agriculture extension officers are too few to service all villages. Traditional knowledge is now not adequate for this changing climate. More modern technologies in improved agriculture, water harvesting, disease control, energy use etc. are needed to equip the community to adapt to the impacts of climate change, and adequate time is needed for people to change their practices and behaviours.

Selected ward for scaling up Ecovillage innovations

We suggest to scale up eco-village innovations in Idifu ward in Chamwino district. The ward seems to be the most vulnerable to the impact of climate change (particularly drought).

Typically this ward experiences food shortage between 6 and 9 months per year. In this year 2013, the rainfall was minimal (400mm) leading to very poor harvests, with farmers anticipating food shortages of more than 9 months. The majority of farming communities practice traditional agricultural practices where land is not tilled before planting. Less than 40% of households in Idifu ward can afford to cultivate the land using ox plough.

Water shortage is very common in Idifu ward. The ward has 2 boreholes, one at Idifu and the other at Miganga village. In the dry season these are the main source of water. All local shallow wells dry up in the dry season. There are no water distribution points in Miganga village, although a pipeline and water distribution points are currently under construction by MAMADO funded by Action Aid, with assistance from UK youth volunteers.

The ward has no cattle dip, no tractor, no power tiller. The ward is entirely dependent on firewood and charcoal as the source of energy for cooking using traditional three stone stoves. There is no other source of fuel, and no energy saving stoves are used. According to Ward Executive Officer, in the past tree planting was possible but in the last 10 years tree planting is not possible because of serious water shortage.

The ward is located about 80 km from Dodoma town, about 35km tarmac road (Dodoma-Bwigiri) and 30 km rough road (Bwigiri – Idifu).

Innovations needed to empower the community to adapt to the impacts of climate change, especially drought, will be on agriculture, livestock, water, and afforestation using farmer managed natural regeneration and tree planting, and other income generating activities such as beekeeping and leather making.

 

Contributors;

Dr. Francis Bernard Njau – Institute of Rural Development Planning

Mr. Michael Farrelly – Tanzanian Organic Agriculture Movement

Mr. Bakari Mongo – Tanzanian Organic Agriculture Movement

Mr. Elirehema Swai – Agriculture Research Institute Hombolo

Ms. Hoffu Mwakaje – Dodoma Municipal Council

Ms. Benedicta Kimbe  – Institute of Rural Development Planning

Mr. Joshua Mshuda – Dodoma Environmental Network

Mr. Anthon  Kasota – Maji na Maendeleo Dodoma (Water and Development – Dodoma)

References

Prime Ministers Office (2012). Risk, vulnerability and capacity Assessment report for Chamwino district – Dodoma.

United Republic of Tanzania (2013). 2012 Population and Housing census.

Vice President’s Office, Division of Environment, (2007), National Adaptation Programme of Action (NAPA)

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