Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Long Rains

We've been warned.

From NTV News yesterday (sorry couldn't find the clip online):

The long rains are expected to start in the next two or so weeks. A few parts of the country will experience increased levels of rainfall (more than usual/expected) but most parts of the country will experience depressed levels of rainfall (less than usual/expected). Areas like Eastern, Central and North Eastern will fall in the latter category, with areas around Lake Victoria falling into the the former category.

Despite the depressed nature of the rainfall, meteorologists still expect some storms to occur so flood prone areas are at risk of experiencing flooding.

Advice from the meteorologists to farmers was to plant crops that will not require very much water and that mature fast so that we do not find ourselves in a drought situation later in the year.

This is a critical piece of information and should be placed top of everybody's agenda.

  • Our Agricultural Ministry should be going round passing this advice to farmers; so too our leaders.
  • Our disaster management authorities and local authorities in flood prone areas should be on the ground now taking measures to avoid catastrophic flooding and ensuring preparedness if such flooding does occur.
  • Our water authorities around the country should be putting measures in place to harvest water and should pass some tips to the populace to do the same. We as the populace should also get the ball rolling, lets start talking about it and discussing it. Let TV stations carry stories on it. We need to harvest and conserve whatever water we get in the form of these rains.
  • Local authorities should be unblocking drainages to ensure that road works done over the dry season are not immediately undone by the rains.
  • Individually we should also be buying our umbrellas, car wipers etc now rather than wait til the rain arrives and the prices are increased by 20-30% or more.

Those are just a few of the top of my head but the point is we have afford to be caught napping when these rains do come. We've been warned.

1 comment:

  1. I totally agree we shouldn't be caught 'unaware' when the rains commence. I also like the ideas you have proposed; A dam-reservoir (national) for rain run-off would be a good idea. The purpose of the dam would be to store rain water which can then be treated and used when water supply becomes scarce to complement existing water supply.
    On that note several questions come to mind; Does Kenya have water harvesting policies? I realize that some communities have initiated water harvesting projects but I would like to know how would a small enterprise, farm, household or community go about establishing their own dam for harvesting and using rain water? Is there some assistance or incentives provided by the government for those who establish such initiatives?
    Lastly where does the rain water that enters road edge drainage systems usually visible on properly constructed roads in Kenya end-up? Does it just stagnate under the roads or are they directed to nearby rivers to drain into?