Climate Change Alters Uganda’s Rainfall Patterns, Affecting Farmers in Kayunga District

4. December 2023|In News, Uganda

Uganda, typically known for its stable rainfall patterns, is experiencing the negative impacts of climate change. The once-reliable seasons have given way to erratic rainfalls, prolonged downpours, and harsh droughts, significantly affecting farmers and the nation at large.

At Ranch on the Nile in Kayunga District, the ongoing downpours have caused damage on our farmer’s field near the banks of the River Nile, resulting in a loss of over 200 trees in October 2023. The downpour went on for three days intermittently and lead to flooding that submerged a sizable expanse of the farm.

Our Farmer Training Facilitator for Kayunga District, recorded in the incident report. ‘’This is our biggest partner farm in Kayunga which dedicated 61.3 acres to a woodlot, and is facing significant challenges. The farm lies in a rain shadow and receives less rain and longer droughts than the surrounding areas. With 50 acres planted in the last season, the young seedlings have suffered significant damage from the floods.” 

In anticipation of the El Niño phenomenon this season, the Uganda Meteorological Authority issued an early warning alert to farmers informing that Uganda was going to receive heavy rainfalls from September until December and communities were advised to prepare for attendant problems such as floods. As a result the farmers had dug drainage channels during the  land preparation. These were however not enough due to the heavy and prolonged downpour.

“We had anticipated El Niño this season and made preparations, including the creation of drainage channels. However, the excessive rainfall surpassed our expectations, leading to the flooding of the trees.”

Despite the devastation, the farmer with support from Fairventures Worldwide has devised sustainable solutions to tackle the challenges caused by heavy rains and prevent future occurrences. Additional drainage channels have been dug, and plans are underway to replace the 100 to 200 Terminalia superba trees that were destroyed, with more water-tolerant species.

Being confronted with events like these vividly shows the necessity to fight climate change. Planting more trees is a simple yet impactful way to contribute. Let’s collectively take action to safeguard our environment for current and future generations. Together, we can make a difference. Plant a tree today!