On the Sunday of 6th April a good number of our members visited Watoto Wema children’s home in Ruai. This is an initiative that is usually coordinated by the Reach Out Program (ROP) of AYICC-K. ROP is a commitment to support the Watoto Wema Centre, an orphanage with over 56 children (35 of them are boarders) through visits, donations and mentorship.


The world today is facing climatic challenges and the global south is at a higher risk of global warming. The sea water levels are rising and some of the people living in the coast lines will be forced to shift and change their way of life.


The environment has become fundamental in development and the world is meeting again at the United Nation Office in Nairobi for an environmental assembly. The assembly is the part of the Rio+20 outcomes.

February 14, 2017


by: Green Treasures Farms. 
A picture of rain droplets taken through a glass window.

 Also follow post at https://greentreasurersfarms.wordpress.com/2017/02/07/a-dwindle-in-nature-a-call-to-action-water-is-life/
The New Year was ushered in with a lot of enthusiasm in Kenya. In Nairobi, it was ululations and chants of thanksgiving all through. What many least expected was the unprecedented alert that water shortages were a thing to be expected in the city and its suburbs. Yes, according to the weatherman, the short rains in November-January period were not sufficient to reach the 84% that has been the level to sustain the city’s water needs.
As it stands now, the media announced that Ndakaini dam, the main reservoir that supplies water to Nairobi, is at or below a 48% level. North eastern (Isiolo),Tana river, Ktui and other counties are not spared on this. This is alarming, not just for the water sector, but also across other crosscutting sectors such as health and food. We stand the risk of disease outbreaks out of these water shortages, and we know this could be fatal even as our medics are on strikes.
The big question here is; are we really having competence in disaster preparedness programs? Are the citizens well aware of the pressing issues? What measures is the government taking in curbing these issues? Should we rather cut down trees in forests and harvest sand in our water bodies build more structures and skyscrapers at the expense of our nature? How can sustainable development principles drive all the processes and secure the future of the environment and humanity ultimately?
It’s a big hit on the back, to see people and livestock lose lives to hunger and starvation, which is mainly due to water scarcity or rather unavailability. Clearly, Kenya is part of the sub-Saharan Africa and droughts are expected every once in about 7years on the upper end. How then has this informed our responses to such scenarios?
Now, more than ever before, is the highest time that Kenyans understand that climate change is real, and that our combined efforts are vital to curbing its impacts. Look at the Mau complex for instance. I had my first tour to the forest this January and believe you me; things are over the frying pan into the fire itself. Forest degradation is a real-time occurrence and its effects are felt even by the inhabitants there. Most of the forest has gone away due to land grabbing and illegal settling. As an important water tower in the country, and a source of water to many rivers, including the Ewaso nyiro, the ecosystem is dwindling and slowly dying. We need to arrest these issues and really secure the survival of our future generations.
“ Njaanuary” as it is commonly known in Kenya, to mean a starvation month after the extravagance filled December holidays, has come with a double tragedy. No water and access to food is costly. People are now forced to buy water from street vendors, whose source and quality no one can assure.
Fellow Kenyans, fellow Africans. Let us learn to deal with the climate issues in our continent, and more to it, let everyone of us take a positive step to doing a thing to give nature the treat she deserves. If we do not neglect these efforts, then indeed we are neglecting the survival of our future generations. God did not place us in the only life supporting planet so that we destroy it. No, not. We ought to be true custodians of nature. Greed and Self-interests over natural resources should not guide and inform decision making and policies, rather, the people centered approach to serve all. #let the current water scarcity be a warning to many. Nature reciprocates the vices done to her in very high magnitudes.

December 1, 2016


AYICC Kenya members during the Writers workshop 2016
by Fredrick Ouma, Dolphine Magero

The writers’ workshop took place at the Institute of Climate Change, Chiromo campus. The forum which sought out to build capacity for the young writers emphasizing on their academic writing skills, was organized by the Africa Youth Initiative on Climate Change (AYICC) Kenyan chapter in collaboration with Chiromo Environmental Awareness club (CEAC) and the Institute of Climate Change and Adaptation (ICCA). Gracing the event were; Head of  Institute of Climate Change Directorate, Prof. Shem Wandiga, Dr. Onyango Onyoyo a writer cum climate change consultant from the Institute of Climate Change, renown media personality, Mr.Johnson Mwakazi and an Oxford Alumni Dr. Grace Mwaura. This team of intellectuals would give the “sermon” for the day.
To kick off the day, Paul Mutuku, the current AYICC communication coordinator, gave welcoming remarks to acquaint participants who had thronged the event from as far as Kenyatta University on the objectives of the forum. The AYICC national coordinator, Mr. Fredrick Ouma cordially welcomed the guests to the forum. The panelists then proceeded to give their insightful wealth of knowledge on the writing world.
The ball would then roll to Dr. Onyango Onyoyo, who in the bid to highlight the basics to climate change communication issues would grade lack of awareness as “black innocence”. He would proceed to confirm the authenticity of IPCC updates in communicating global issues like melting of the arctic ice and concur with the fact that GHGs was a present world disaster holding the very existence of mankind at gunpoint. He would then proceed to second the already known fact that the “blanket-stratosphere” was holding the solar radiation in the atmosphere causing dire effects like sea level increase at the same time turning the sea and the arctic ice to a scapegoat for excess carbon. He would then urge the young people to take up the initiative to curb this dogging menace through capacity building and awareness creation all in the spirit of embracing the futuristic aspect of climate change for the benefit of humanity. He would then touch on issues of water scarcity, blaming food insecurity on loss of soil moisture and unpredictability of rains, in addition quoting GMO dependence as a threat to food production. He attributed the increased snake bites in arid and semi-arid areas to the seeking of a safe haven in people’s homesteads. His concluding remarks were that the ICT tools were vital in climate change communication to the people to the extent of influencing a behavioral change and that young people were to be part of the solution while also respecting those in leadership.
The ball was passed to Professor Shem Wandiga who reiterated the need to get the history of Climate Change well to enable young writers have profound understanding of the operations of the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) fund which Africa was yet to access. He mentioned “100 billion Dollar climate finance” noting that Kenya and a few East African countries are all that was needed to exhaust the climate finance kitty, reiterating its inadequacy. He also urged the participants to engage the national assembly on the implementation of the Paris agreement through writing to clerk@parliament.go.ke

Guest speaker, Mr. Mwakazi expresses a point during the workshop

The panel session would be ushered in and facilitated by Mr. Phantus Wambiya, the AYICC Deputy National Coordinator. This was the highlight of the day as the renowned Mr. Johnson Mwakazi gave the four pointers to good writing, that is, surety, simplicity, authenticity and brevity. He informed young writers to add pictures, animations and comics where possible in order to reach a greater audience and if possible use audio forms to gain more traction. He stressed on the need of having good presentation skills and not being too wordy as this would put them in danger of losing the audience.
Dr. Grace Mwaura, one of the panelists, made it clear that there were writing opportunities and it was up to the young people to take up the chances and to ace the times. Dr. Mwaura challenged the young people to take action as soon as yesterday reiterating that they had a key role in the implemention of decisions in the current world. She encouraged the young people to write as many times as possible, make as many mistakes as possible as this would help them improve their writing. Dr. Mwaura would then give a snippet of the writing process which would start by problem identification, idea organization, and the outline and then the writing process itself. The connection of the dots to the different bodies would help in linking of the story.
All said and done, we cannot fail to express our heartfelt gratitude to the Institute of Climate Change directorate for hosting the event and for the invaluable time and space shared by Prof. Shem Wandiga, and Dr. Onyango Onyowo, from the institute. We e

xtend our special gratitude to Mr. Johnstone Mwakazi and Dr. Grace Mwaura for creating time to be with the participants, and to the participants for being there. We also applaud the organizing committee led by Ms Dolphine Magero (Chiromo Environmental Awareness Club, CEAC), Mr. Fredrick Ouma (Africa Youth Initiative on Climate Change, AYICC) and Mr. James Kaoga (ICCA) for making sure that everything proceeded as planned. We thank God, above all for seeing us through the process.


Dr. Grace Mwaura enlightening the youth on better writing skills.      From left Dr. Grace Mwaura, Dr. Onyango Onyoyo, Mr. Johnson Mwakazi.

The panelist interacting with the audience.                  Environmental enthusiast and student, Dolphine Magero, from           
                                                                            University of Nairobi giving her presentation.

Mr. Stom presenting a spoken word                             
Mr. Phantus Wambiya from AYICC Kenya chairing the forum.

Attendees coming together for a group photo with Mr. Mwakazi.      Participants and guests following a presentation

November 28, 2016

Why Kenya should break free from fossil fuels!

Follow the story with The Conservationist's Sight ...

Desertification has now spread into northern Kenya, rainfall shortages in the past year caused famine across various regions of the country, not to mention the past El-Nino effects and the recent heat waves that were experienced by all. And now the ongoing torrential rainfall is set to damage the crops of many farmers. All a result of climate change.

Women and girls, caught in a small sandstorm, fetch water in Wajir, Kenya.

[Photo Credit: www.theatlantic.com ]

Science clearly shows that there is a strong correlation between the emission of greenhouse gases through the burning of fossil fuels and the average rise in global temperature. These emissions of greenhouse gases largely are, if not entirely, the result of human activity.

Many may say – especially in Africa – that climate change is the enemy from above. We get seasonal rains that water our crops from the clouds in the sky and when the rains fail as they have been over the past couple years, we instinctively look up. Agriculture is an important aspect of the livelihoods of the Kenyan people and the African continent. 70% of Africans are farmers, 1/3rd of the continents income is generated through agriculture; 95% of which are rain-fed crops, so when there are no rain, as a result of the impacts of climate change, we have no choice but to look up. But I would like to suggest something different, especially to the people of my home country; the enemy in truth does not stand above but rather, lies beneath.

Fossil fuels as we all know are the non-renewable energy resources which include oil, coal and natural gas. This energy or carbon store was formed when prehistoric plants and animals died and were gradually buried by layers of rock; over millions of years. In the past 100years, the burning of fossil fuels has caused the concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere to increase drastically. Currently, 30 billion tons of Carbon Dioxide is released into the atmosphere every year. The amount of Carbon emitted and the rate at which it is being released, needless to say, is alarming. But despite how complicated climate science and global climate negotiations may seem to the average reader, the ultimate solution to the climate problem really is very simple; Break Free From Fossil Fuels!

Crude oil was first discovered in the northern part of Kenya in the year 2012.  Today our newspaper headlines constantly read in bold: ‘Kenya may begin exporting one billion barrels of oil by September’, ‘Kenya set to join Leagues of Oil Exporters’, and only one month ago, it was estimated that Kenya’s oil deposits can run her for the next 300 years! Indeed, these prospects sound breathe taking but sadly, they literally are breathe taking in reality.

Men working at an oil rig after oil was discovered in northern Kenya.

If we, as a nation, exploit our fossil fuel resources, we will, in turn, add to the effects of climate change even in our own country. Our carbon emissions will soon translate to even warmer temperatures and less rainfall and agricultural produce. It is not logical to drown the cries of millions of farmers who live off their next harvest, in crude oil. We may look at the history of the industrial revolution and conclude that the only route to economic development and advancement is through the exploitation of our fossil fuels but this is far from the truth. Renewable sources of energy; solar, wind, geothermal and hydroelectric power provide an alternate route to economic development that is far less dangerous. It may seem hard to believe that renewable energy can match the benefits that non-renewable energy offers, but before you resort to any preconceived opinions that you may have, I ask that you consider the following facts and statistics.

Wind power, which is the fastest-growing energy source in the world since 1990, has already taken root in Kenya.

Kenya was the first African country to tap geothermal energy from which she earns a net profit of KSH 11.5billion per annum from only one power plant.

Africa harbors the largest hydroelectric power plant in Egypt’s Aswan Dam, and yet the World Bank estimates that only 7 to 8% of Africa’s hydroelectric power potential is currently utilized.

Solar energy is the most abundant energy resource in the world, but the beauty with Kenya is; unlike many other countries that experience different seasons, the sun rises and sets 365 days a year and an extra day on a leap year, which simply means that we are a country that has a constant guarantee of solar energy and yet this resource remains untapped.

Potential of renewable energy in Kenya.

[Photo Credit: www.venturesafrica.com ]

 Despite all these shocking statistics, 80% of Africa’s electricity is still generated from fossil fuels but many have concluded that; with the right infrastructure, 50% of electricity generated in Southern and Eastern Africa can be obtained from renewable sources of energy by 2030. And so I ask; is the use of fossil fuels really necessary at the expenses of agriculture? Today, men and women in Kenya struggle to put food on their table for their families not because of their slackness, but because climate change has brought about major changes in our rainfall patterns. Food crops are failing.


A smallholder farmer working a maize field in the district of Embu, Kenya.

[Photo Credit: www.dw.com ]

A wise man once said; when the rivers are all dried up and the trees cut down, man will then realise that he cannot eat money.

Africa’s land is the epicenter of natural resources that offer tremendous energy potential, majority of which surprisingly remain untapped. I believe that this situation still can be redirected. If we focus on exploiting and financing the use of renewable energy as opposed to mining for oil in the northern part of Kenya which is already facing desertification, then we have the solution to our problems.
Aside from this, many have rightfully argued that the historic responsibility of carbon emission lies with the Western countries and that they should take responsibility through Climate Finance and be the only nations to reduce their levels of green-house gas emissions. Now although more developed nations are chiefly responsible for the changes in climate we face today, the impacts will be felt by all. Drought, famine, floods, decreased rainfall, extreme weather conditions, spread of disease, loss of animal and plant species, melting of polar ice caps, rise in sea level, increase in average global temperature, you name it, climate change remains a global phenomenon with a global impact, so a global response will only suffice to address this global issue.

It has often been repeated that our generation is the first one to experience the impacts of climate change, but what we largely do not seem to realize is that our generation is also the last one that can do something about it, if only we would break free from fossil fuels.

- Unelker Maoga

Report by: Tracy Kimathi

The United Nations held the second UNEA conference that took place on the 23- 27th of May at the UNEP headquarters in Nairobi, Kenya. The theme was “Delivering on the Environmental Dimension of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”. Unlike UNEA-1, thee agenda included youth within the delegations, students from different universities as well as youth initiatives were invited to interact with over 1,000senior policy makers representing the world's highest level decision making bodies on the environment.
The conference targeted the following agendas;
  • Reflection on the latest global, regional and national development related to the environment
  • Innovative technologies and ideas for a more efficient strategy between South-South cooperation (S.S.C)
  • Ideas for how to encourage international and regional collaboration to enable implementation of policies
  • Understanding the link between S.S.C and  agenda 2030
The assembly entailed Sustainable Innovation Forum and side events that targeted how different organizations/ manage their waste and pollution levels through waste reduction and recycling practices. They also looked into SDG related issues like Gender equity, Zero Hunger, No poverty, Clean water among others. For a more elaborate information, the report will cover some of the assembly`s highlights

“Africa's economies most relies on agriculture and tourism, we have the most to lose in environmental degradation. African countries should therefore invest in Conservation” H.E President, Uhuru Kenyatta.

The United Nations held the second UNEA conference that took place on the 23-27th of May at the UNEP headquarters in Nairobi, Kenya. The theme was “Delivering on the Environmental Dimension of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”. Unlike UNEA 1, the agenda included youth within the delegations, students from different universities as well as youth initiatives were invited to interact with over 1,000 senior policy makers representing the world’s highest level decision making bodies on the environment.
The conference targeted the following agendas;
  • Reflection on the latest global, regional and national development related to the environment
  • Innovative technology and  ideas for a more efficient strategy  between South-South Cooperation(S.S.C)
  • Ideas for how to encourage international and regional collaboration to enable implementation of policies
  • Understanding the link between S.S.C, Agenda 2030 and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG)
The assembly composed of Sustainable Innovation forums as well as side events that targeted how different organizations/regions manage their waste and pollution levels through waste reduction and recycling practices. They also looked at SDG related issues e.g. Gender Equality, Zero Hunger, No Poverty, Clean water among others. For a more elaborate information basis, the report will cover some of the Assembly’s highlights.

“Africa’s economy mostly relies on Agriculture and Tourism, we have the most to lose in environmental degradation. African countries should therefore invest in conversation” H.E President, Uhuru Kenyatta

Opening Ceremony
The ceremony was opened by the President of UNEA Oyun Sanjaasuren with a short speech. The guests were then welcomed to snacks and beverages that they enjoyed while interacting with exhibitors as they waited for the panels to start. The following are the various exhibition information.
Sky Mining- Carbon Wealth has revolutionized the game by introducing a technology that converts carbon in the atmosphere to a cheap, clean, renewable fossil fuel and they do this by planting grass!! The idea solves the problem of relying on pollutant fossil fuels to generate economic benefit and helps in removing carbon(iv) oxide via a natural process. Africa was especially a targeted region as one of the grass species that contain hyper efficient CO2 pumps is the Elephant grass, a native plant to the African grassland. Grass as a source of energy is highly renewable and cheap due to its low maintenance cost. Embracing SkyMining biology and technology will reduce consumption of charcoal, paraffin and other ‘dirty’ fossil fuels.
Kiira Motors Corporation
Kayoola Solar Bus, an initiative sponsored by President Yoweri Museveni, is now considered one of Uganda’s national treasure. The bus was manufactured in Uganda by the Kiira Motors Corporation, the first in Eastern and Central Africa to launch an electric vehicle equipped with solar invertors as a backup power system. The organization offered rides on the solar bus prototype to prove the efficiency and comfort ability of the vehicle. The success and potential of the vehicle transitioned Kiira motors program into a government funded project that is strategized to transform Uganda into a middle income economy by 2040.
Planet Labs- This is a project that initiated the launch of 113 satellites called Doves. They provide imagery data that is aimed to note unnoticeable changes especially in the environment and agriculture sector. The GIS data services are easily available at their ground stations at affordable rates. The satellites have archived data that can help one differentiate change over a period of time.

S.D.G, S.S.C and AGENDA 2030
The programs of the day concentrated on SDG, SSC and Agenda 2030 goals and the road to achieving them. Various prominent speakers came together in a panel to discuss the way forward to a sustainable, cooperative future.
Under the first delegations, It was realized that ‘Partnership through South-South Cooperation’ can be promoted by an objective based strategy where countries should strengthen political skills despise their differences and together look at long term  achievement as opposed to individual, short term ones. Creation of awareness both locally and internationally was heavily emphasized through dialogues and the media [social media included]. Unity between both international and regional states will increase knowledge based ideas where every country can contribute based on individual experiences to draft achievable solutions.  
A major issue raised throughout the dialogues is based on an observation where organizations like UN would hold conferences, come to agreements and set up policies that will never be subjected to implementation. ‘A barking dog that does not bite’, they say. Various comments were raised by the audience about this and it was noted that both the government and the people have a duty to ensure implementation. The people have a duty to advocate and pressure their governments to be active in periodic reviews on how they’ve contributed to the SDG agreed upon. The leaders were encouraged to involve the youth to help with these implementations as they have a larger number and an even larger voice on issues. As an addition, innovative data access technology solutions were introduced and discussed where monitoring of quality of implementations could be carried out. Organizations like Planet Labs Satellites were a major stakeholder as they could provide the imagery observations with the above stated 113 Dove Satellites.
The bigger question was however on Funding. A beautiful cartoon caricature was displayed the next day on how the public sector claims to have no money therefore handing the ball to the private sector, who cannot fund without viable economic returns. The delegations then turned its focused on How to encourage funding by making environmental ideologies profitable as well as sustainable. This closed the morning sessions releasing delegates and invited guests to lunch.

Air Quality
The afternoon delegations were set to address Air Pollution per city, nation, region as well as their sources and actions to be taken to curb the pandemic. For those who weren’t aware of the serious outcomes of this specific type of pollution, then the panel of scientists’ contributions had an overwhelming effect on them. Air pollution’s effect on the SDG goals were so severe that it took up as the leading topic on most Side events held at the UNEA. According to statistics 7-8 million premature deaths occur due to air pollution related diseases, that’s more than the total toll on HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria recorded deaths COMBINED! Other disadvantages include pregnancy defects and Cancer. Environmental defects cause by air pollution includes global warming and climate change. The rate of air pollution increases by 8% every 5 years. Action should be taken immediately. Sources of Air Pollution are divided into 2 basis; Indoor Sources (charcoal, paraffin use) and Outdoor Sources (Transport Industry, Burning of Waste).
The peak of the discussion spurred up when the panel guests emphasized that the reason for the quick and vast continuity of this pollution is not due to lack of technology nor lack of funding but the greed that comes from the stakeholders of already existing fossil fuel sources e.g oil and coal. The 1% that control the release and production of these resources go to extreme measures to ensure a closed pathway for free, renewable, clean energy such as solar, biomass briquettes (Note Sky Mining mentioned above), electric power… the list is endless. This was the truth and the panels were commended for their bold statements on the reserved issue.
Sky Mining was not the only revolutionary component, Air Quality Monitoring technology came to the spotlight during the Sustainable Innovation delegations. Less than a week before the Expo, a few monitors were placed within the Nairobi region and the results were displayed on the said day. The reading showcased above average patterns per area and identified the source of emission. This proved the efficiency and accuracy of the technology though the total tally of purchase and maintenance price of the equipment came to an estimate of 1 million dollars, an unexpected high pricing range. It was then brought up that for the air quality monitoring technology to be encouraged, there should be an affordability consideration, government reaction and most importantly an Interest from the ‘Mwananchi’.
Ways suggested on how to financially control the price of the monitors included; Reduction of tax on priors and Training locals rather than hiring experts to read and maintain the monitored data.

Sustainable Energy and Technology
The discussions started by comparing how different regions have progressed in achieving set Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Countries including Australia and Canada proved to be investing in vehicles with low Sulphur emissions and non-solid cooking/heating stoves while Africa showed to having the lowest investment in clean technology. Energy production is one of the leading sources of air pollution and it has contributed to 92% of the current 300 billion tons of carbon in the atmosphere, doubling the CO2 levels in the last 25 years. Though Africa has received a lot of criticism for delay in achieving MDGs, the continent has, since the mid-1990s, arguably been making the greatest progress towards the goals. The continent should however consider making sustainable energy policies a forefront to government goals. Not only that, but also gain a sense of importance in implementation of set policies and technology for sustainable energy.
The development of a vast energy industry will create thousands of jobs and capital for the region’s citizens. As earlier discussed the technology of renewable energy supply already exists, the main barriers to be tackled are Security of Supply, Acceptance of new energy by the government as well as the people and finally Reducing the risks of investment in Renewable energy. African leaders urged the youth to embrace competitiveness in the energy industry so as to expand the options of type of energy as well as encourage reduction of price of the same. For Example; If Kengen supplied hydroelectric energy at 40ksh per KW-h then a new company emerges and opts to supply solar, hydro and geothermal harvested energy at 35ksh per KW-h, there will be a notable difference in affordability, sufficiency in supply and variety of energy sources.

Waste Management
The first afternoon delegation of the day targeted disposal of waste and its defects to the environment. Each person produces 60-70 tons of waste in a lifetime. According to snapshots presented, categories of waste ranging from organic, electronic and hazardous wastes are readily growing in developing countries. Improper disposal methods of these substances emit harmful substances that lead to air and water pollution. The debate heated up when it came to notice that developed nations dispose off their used electrical gadgets in form of ‘donations’ to developing countries, they later take no responsibility for their end-life disposal.
Big organizations were exposed by the panel members; including Apple, Microsoft and Starbucks; for tax evasion especially within the African market. The discussion came about when the importance of tax funding for waste management came to debate. The panel went ahead and created awareness on the responsibility of product manufacturers to recover their E-waste once their products are considered as waste to the user. The issue of No Producer Responsibility spurred up questions from the audience targeting the disregard that comes from E-waste transfer shipped to developing nations from developed nations. Corrupt governments that take up funds from waste management departments were also highlighted.
“Not many Citizens are aware of proper waste disposal policies, corrupt leaders use this as a sector to embezzle funds.”
An issue of E-waste Cartels was also brought up by an audience member. The cartels control the waste market and use the money earned to purchase guns and drugs. It was suggested that only proper legal systems can control this gangs and media exposure is a key component in ensuring this.
On the domestic side of the delegation, panelists encouraged citizens to adopt a recycling culture where segregation of waste (paper, plastic and organics) should be paramount. It was also noted that an individual can generate value from recycled materials as seen in composting and up cycling.

October 13, 2016


By Dolphine Magero

CCCF                           County Climate Change Fund
WAPC                         Ward Adaptation Planning Committees        
PFMA                         Public Finance Management Act   
CIDP                           County Integrated Development Plan
GCF                             Green Climate fund       
ERPA                           Emissions Reduction Purchase Agreement
Ci-Dev                         Carbon Initiative for Development   
IFAD                             International Fund for Agricultural Development
SREP                            Scaling up Renewable Energy Program in Low Income Countries                    
SCF                               Strategic Climate Fund
CIF                                Climate Investment Fund
CSO                              Civil society
GEF                               Global Environmental Facility.
UNFCC                          United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change
UNCHE                         United Nations Conference on Human Environment
UNCED                         United Nations Conference on Environment and Development
POPs                             Persistent Organic Pollutants
CBD                               Convention on Biological Diversity
SBSTTA                         Subsidiary Body on Scientific Technical and Technological Advice
CHM                             Clearing House Mechanism
UNEP                            United Nations Environmental Programme
UNDP                            United Nations Development Programme
ICRAF                            World Agroforestry Centre.
FAO                               Food and Agricultural Organization
NEMA                           National Environmental Management Act.
SBI                                Subsidiary Body for Implementation.
CTS                               Committee on Science and technology.

The issue of climate change has been referred to being the greatest threat to humanity. It has been of major concern to the entire world and its effect has been felt significantly, especially in the 21st century. This paper gives a brief history on how the world came together to discuss matters of climate change and matters of climate finance which is one of the key ways of mitigating the effects on climate change. It seeks to discuss how funds for climate change mitigation are mobilized and how they trickle down to the grass root level where the burden of climate change is most felt. In addition, it highlights the entities that deal with climate finance and how they help climate change mitigation at the county level in Kenya through channeling of these funds. More so discusses the methods of climate change mitigation that have been conducted down at the county level which have borne fruit and have had significant impact on not only on the climate-change-global-crisis but that have also had impact on the lives of the affected communities.

According to Managing Land Degradation in Kenya by Gideon H.N., It was not until 1972 at the Stockholm conference on Human Environment ( UNCHE)  that the global community begun to take note of the changes that were occurring in the environment due to the activities of mankind.  Here it was proposed that the world communities should set a date to meet and discuss the way forward on the issue concerning the environment. This would be done at the Agenda 21 world meeting which was a meeting to discuss how the world would go about the issues that would affected the 21st century. This meeting was held in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil in 1992 and the world would meet under the umbrella of United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) making 1992 to be the baseline year for all environmental issues. This would be also called the Earth summit. This meeting would be fruitful as it came up with; the Agenda 21 document, the Rio principals on Environment and Development, A statement on forests and four binding agreements. The fourth one which is most important in this context entailed; a binding agreement on Biodiversity, a binding agreement on Climate change and a binding agreement on Drought and desertification. They were initially three but a fourth binding agreement came up much later which was a binding agreement on Persistent Organic Pollutants(POPs) there four would then be known as the Rio Conventions. Counties that had agreed to these documents would be required to abide by these agreements failure to which there would be consequences. For the implementation of these agreements 600billion USD would be required of which 60% would be sourced from local resources of the involved countries and the remaining 40% would be sourced from international donors. This would mean that each country would set aside money from their national budget to environmental issues which would be the baseline for the total environmental funds. And the incremental costs would be met by international standards. The sourcing of this 40% would create the need for a mobilizer or a body to mobilize these funds thus giving birth to the Global Environmental Facility (GEF) whose work would be to mobilize and distribute funds according to decisions made at the UN level. Each of the agreements would have a 5-level structured level of decision making body.
These levels of decision making would be same for also the other three binding agreement with the most critical level of decision making in this research paper being the GEF. This level would have a secretariat who would implement these decisions made via three implanting agencies therefore giving birth to UNEP, UNDP and the World Bank. From these implementing agencies funds would be channeled to the executing agents such as ICRAF and FAO. Though this money could be channeled to the various institutions. There are three types of funding levels which include the full scale project, the medium sized projects and the small grants project. Small grants projects would amount up to USD 50000, the medium scale project would be between USD 50000 to USD 1M and the full scale project would amount up to more than 1M. Full-scale and medium sized projects would be handled by bodies such as NEMA and the small grants projects would be handled by bodies like UNDP.

The term climate finance dates back to 1992 when the United Nations Framework Conventions on Climate Change (UNFCC) agreed that developed countries shall provide “new and additional” financial resources to developing countries. These finances would be channeled through the Global Environmental Facility (GEF). The GEF was later replaced by the Global Climate Fund (GCF) as the main channel for these finances. Climate finance is therefore, financing channeled by national, regional and international entities for climate change mitigation and adaptation projects and programs according to Wikipedia. This definition is coined as a result of the blame placed immensely on the developed countries for their great impact on the climate change. This is due to the fact that they are believed to have established the very first industries in the world therefore initiating the pollution on the environment which eventually led to climate change. They are also believed to own most of the industries that have impacted the environment through greenhouse gas emissions in both their countries and the developing countries. They are therefore to compensate these developing countries through climate financing.  Climate finance in simpler terms refers to all financial flows relating to climate change mitigation and adaptation. Therefore Kenya as a developing country becomes of key interest as I strive to investigate how developing nations handles the climate finance it receives both from outside and from within. This paper dwells on climate finance in Kenya as a nation and how Kenya manages the funds it receives of climate mitigation at the county level. 

Kenya as a country has launched a 15member task force chaired by the Principal Secretary for Environment and natural Resources Dr. Richard Lesiyampe under the ministry of Environment and Natural resources that constitutes of individuals such as from the Kenya Climate Change Working Group, Transparency International (K), the Kenya Association of manufactures, and the University of Nairobi among others. This team is to lead dialogues, advocate for climate change legislation and advocate for low carbon for sustainable development in the country. The devolution government has allowed Kenyan communities better access to climate financing according to a blogger called Jane Kiiri. Makueni County became the first county to enact the new climate financing legislation as farmers have been able to learn about crops for climate adaptation planning. This County Climate Change Fund (CCCF) has enabled counties such as Makueni to source out climate finance from their own budget as well as from national and international levels. Currently in Kenya, Isiolo, Wajir Garissa and Kitui are the only four arid and semi-arid counties that are at the mature stages of approving their CCCF legislation. The CCCF legislation will ensure counties set aside part of their budget for adaptation finance and through the elected Ward Adaptation Planning Committees (WAPCs) who will decide on how 70% of the money raised, is to be used in the climate change adaptation. Through this channel, the individual member of the society at the grassroots level, who experiences the burden of climate change at first hand and who knows where the problems and the solution lie, will have a say on how these funds will be utilized. In Isiolo the funds has enabled the building of sand dams to trap the rain water providing clean and reliable source of water during drought.

This fund in Isiolo has also helped to strengthen the customary resource management institutions like the “dedhas” among the Borana communities and has been used to renovate veterinary laboratories that play a key role in diagnosing and treatment of livestock as well as rehabilitating the fence water pans that are important water sources for the wet seasons. The CCCF in the country works in accordance with the country’s Public Finance Management Act (PFMA) that empowers the county government’s financial body with permission from the county assembly to establish a public fund that will be resourced from different sources. Climate change adaptation projects are included in the County Integrated Development Plan (CIDP) in order to enable funding from the county government. The CCCF legislation also enables counties to become executing entities in the Green Climate fund (GCF) which will considerable increase available resources to finance investments in adaptation and resilient building in support of community based adaptation. With the success of CCCF, Kenya has become a role model for countries such as Mali and Senegal who are on the path to adopt the same forum.

Kenya as a county is not only trying to combat the effects of climate change in the country but it is also trying to reduce and if possible curb greenhouse gas emissions through low carbon development initiatives. This is in line with the country’s vision 2030 project that seeks to reduce carbon emission by 2030. A good example of such initiatives is the SimGas biogas system under the GHG which signed its first Emissions Reduction Purchase Agreement (ERPA) with the World Bank’s Carbon Initiative for development (Ci-Dev) which entailed the purchase of 500,000 carbon credits that will hopefully improve the affordability of rural households to invest in the biogas technology. This biogas system integrates farm solutions for the rural households for instance, manure from livestock is used as a raw product and the end products are organic slurry and biogas. The biogas is used as a clean cooking fuel that in no way affects the environment and the slurry is used as fertilizer for the crops as well as fodder for animals. This acts as a form of recycling that will minimize wastage as all end products are used up again and has no harm to the environment considering also the fact that it is cheap and affordable to the poorest of households. This reduces the loss of our carbon sink as there is no longer the need for deforestation in order to get wood for fuel. The acquisition of the GHG emissions reductions by the Ci-dev for households that purchase this biogas system will be beneficial also as the standard warranty for biogas system of three years will be extended to five years thereby increasing the consumers’ confidence and lower the thresholds for consumers to invest in the systems technology. The Ci-Dev will contribute USD 125 million towards the SimGas biogas system in order to implement innovative and transformative energy business access models in low income countries such as Kenya.

simgas biogas system
Kenya has another biogas technology called flexibiogas that is suitable for small farmers with limited livestock and has garnered support from the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD). This system entails a bio-digester device made of industrial sheets and pipes estimated to cost about USD 500 with the benefit of generating gas almost immediately. It requires 60kgs of manure to produce 1000litres of gas that is the average amount of gas required for a household. This system caters the small scale farmer as it provides fuel for the household and also manure to cultivate a small piece of land. This system is not only limited to farmers with cows but can also run on poop from chicken or anything bio-digestable like garden weeds, kitchen and market wastes and water hyacinth. This system is suitable for all types of farmers either in the lake regions or the rest of the regions across the country.

The Kenyan government does not work alone in this battle against climate change and climate financing but receives support from other entities such as the Scaling up Renewable Energy Program (SREP) in Low Income Countries which is funded by the Strategic Climate Fund (SCF) and the Climate Investment Fund (CIF) which pledge to give USD 318 million towards climate mitigation. Other key stakeholder include the civil society (CSOs) who have not been left behind in the climate finance arena. This particular stakeholder has helped to set the investment approach and help to involve communities in activities of climate mitigation and adaptation.

1. Jane kiiri blog on climate change.

6. Biogas.co.ke
7. Managing land degradation in Kenya by Gideon H.N Nyamasyo  and Teressa N. Kyalo.