Madagascar might be experiencing its first “climate change famine” as stated by the UN. Thousands of people are suffering from extreme levels of hunger and starvation after 4 years without rainfall.
The Madagascar Famine is the worst to be seen in 40 years and has destroyed the farming communities in the southern parts of the country. The families have to hunt for insects for their survival.
The famine is due to the change in the climate and not conflict. Shelley Thakral, who works for the UN World Food Program, had stated the previous.
The Madagascar Famine: Highest Level Of Food Insecurity In The Planet
The United Nations has estimated that thirty thousand people are experiencing the highest level of food insecurity in the world and the affected numbers could rise in the future. Madagascar is entering its ‘lean season’ before the harvest.
The people had done nothing to face the wrath of the environment and such a phenomenon was unprecedented. They do not utilize fossil fuels yet are bearing the brunt of the change in the climate.
The people in Fandiova were recently found eating locusts as they had run out of food.
Tamaria, a resident, cleans the insects to the best of her ability but there is no water. She and her children have been consuming this for 8 months as there is nothing else to eat and no rains to let them harvest the sown seeds.
Bole, another resident, has resorted to eating cactus leaves. Her husband and her neighbor had recently died of hunger and left her with 2 more children to feed.
Improving The Management Of Water In Madagascar
Madagascar experiences droughts frequently and is affected by the El Nino, which brings in a change in their weather.
The latest IPCC reported that Madagascar has faced an increase in aridity. The aridity is expected to increase if the change in the climate continues.
This must be a powerful message for the people to mend their ways.
Chris Funk, who works at the Santa Barbara University has looked into the atmospheric data and has concluded that Madagascar needs to improve its water management techniques.
The experts believe that a lot can be done in a short window of time. They need to forecast properly about the normal rains and the farmers can use that to increase their production. Chris believes that humans are not powerless when faced with climate change.
The famine in Madagascar is being felt in other towns near the south of the country and children are forced to beg on the streets.
The market is facing inflation, almost 3-4 times the nominal value and people are being forced to sell their land to buy food.
The farmers are sleeping in their cassava fields to protect the crops from desperate people and this has become a dangerous scenario.
It is a great risk for the people and it is becoming more difficult every day, to feed the families. The weather in Madagascar has become unpredictable and people are unaware as to what might happen next.