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Crisis (IPC Phase 3) likely to persist in Obock and Southeast Pastoral Border through December

  • Remote Monitoring Report
  • Djibouti
  • August 2015
Crisis (IPC Phase 3) likely to persist in Obock and Southeast Pastoral Border through December

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  • Key Messages
  • Projected Outlook through December 2015
  • Key Messages
    • Two consecutively poor rainy seasons and their negative impact on poor households are expected to result in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) acute food insecurity through December in Southeastern and Obock Pastoral Zones. 

    • Inadequate pasture availability coupled with anticipated decline in labor opportunities, and depleted food and productive resources for the poor is stretching the ability of rural families to cope, further widening food consumption gaps. 

    • An estimated 120,000 people are in Stressed (IPC Phase 2) and Crisis (IPC Phase 3), mainly in Obock Region and in Southeastern Pastoral areas. The Central Pastoral and Northwest Pastoral Zones are anticipated to be in Stressed (IPC Phase 2) acute food insecurity through December.

    ZONE

     CURRENT ANOMALIES

     PROJECTED ANOMALIES

    Southeastern Pastoral Zone and Obock Pastoralists

    Decreased milk production and livestock productivity, to overall poor March to May 2015 Diraac/Soughoum rains, closely following a similarly below average October to February 2015 Heys/Dadaa season.

    Given the current elongated lean season, pasture, browse, and water scarcity may worsen through most of 2015 with a higher likelihood households will sell increased numbers of livestock at very low price.

    Southeastern Pastoral (Borderside) Zone and Obock Pastoralists

    Poor households have started to use some irreversible coping (such as abandoning their normal livelihoods, migration to water sites, practicing illegal activities, or sell productive assets) to try to compensate for the widening household food consumption gaps.

    Ongoing coping will only provide temporary respite at the expense of future livelihoods which will be accentuated by the impacts of the seasonal rise in food prices. Karan/Karma rainfall is forecast to be average to below average.

     

     

     


    Projected Outlook through December 2015

    Consecutively poor Heys/Dadaa (October 2014 to February 2015) and Diraac/Sougoum (March to May 2015) rainy seasons have resulted in below-normal pasture availability. Successive poor seasons, especially in Obock, have caused extensive depletion of pasture, browse, and water resources, negatively impacting livestock productivity and milk production. This is particularly affecting poor households in the Southeast Pastoral Border area of Ali Sabieh and rural Obock region, which receive most of their rainfall between October and May. Pastoralists have already started to move to areas where there is an improved pasture (like Djibouti Rural and Ali Sabieh) which is currently putting some pressure on the limited pasture and water sources.

    Rains started to pick up during late July and early August with slight regeneration of pasture, but this may not be significant enough in alleviating the deteriorated milk availability and livestock production which usually takes two to three good seasons to recover. The Karan/Karma rains are the most important rain in the Northwestern Pastoral Zone, accounting for more than 60 percent of annual rainfall. The Heys/Dadaa coastal area rains will give respite to coastal pastoral areas only in October after a longer-than-normal June-September lean season and kidding/calving takes place.

    An estimated 120,000 people are in Stressed (IPC Phase 2) and Crisis (IPC Phase 3), mainly in Obock Region and in southeastern pastoral areas. WFP is providing assistance in the form of half rations to approximately 80,000 people. This number includes people arrived in the country since March 2015, fleeing from the conflict in Yemen. A succession of poor seasons, reduced access to humanitarian assistance and very limited alternative income generating activities, are expected to have a sustained negative impact through December 2015.

    Due to recurrent drought, poor households started to use some negative coping trying to compensate for the current gap. According to the multi-agency food security assessment conducted in April – May 2015, about 66 percent of poor households reportedly adopted severe coping strategies much earlier than normal including selling of houses, practicing illegal activities or selling productive assets, widespread internal displacement to meagre water and pasture sites, begging, etc. This may have an additional impact on households by compromising so even harsher than usual economic stability and food security in the coming months. The recent assessment further indicated that the main source of income for rural households are unskilled labor, selling charcoal and firewood, and sale of livestock, representing the main sources of income for almost 70 percent of rural households.

    In rural areas, prices of main food staples (of rice, wheat and sorghum flour, pasta, and sugar) remain stable compared to the previous months. However, prices especially of rice (belem) and wheat flour remain at a relatively higher level compared to the recent five-year average.  Given a fairly large budget devoted to food (with more than three-quarters of the monthly household budget are moderately devoted to the purchase of food products) whose main source of food is the market, higher prices will seriously constrain purchasing capacity of poor households, especially for those areas (like some parts of Obock) who are inaccessible. In addition, the terms of trade is currently disfavoring pastoralists as emaciated livestock are fetching very low prices compared to the relatively higher prices of food items.

    Southeastern and Obock pastoral areas are currently experiencing Crisis (IPC Phase 3) acute food insecurity. This is likely to persist through December 2015 due to inadequate food intake, deteriorating livelihood changes and the absence of viable alternative income sources, and poor nutritional status. Given an improvement in rains in most inland areas, some improvements of pasture and water availability are expected in the coming months with the ongoing Karan/Karma rains (July‑September). Acute food insecurity for poor households in the Central Pastoral and Northwest Pastoral Zones is anticipated to be Stressed (IPC Phase 2) through December. The two later groups are predominantly relying on the June-September inland Karan/Karma rains, which are forecast to be average to below average. Crisis (IPC Phase 3) outcomes are possible in rural community and regions of Dikhil, Arta, and Djibouti rural if there are no sufficient rains during the current Karan/Karma season.

    Figures Figure 1. Cumulation des pluies dans la Zone du Sud-est pastoral (Ali Sabieh), du 1er janvier au 20 août 2015

    Figure 1

    Figure 1. Cumulation des pluies dans la Zone du Sud-est pastoral (Ali Sabieh), du 1er janvier au 20 août 2015

    Source: USGS/FEWS NET

    Figure 2. Comparaison des conditions de la végétation dans le Sud-est pastoral (Ali Sabieh), eMODIS,  du 1er janvier au 10 ao

    Figure 2

    Figure 2. Comparaison des conditions de la végétation dans le Sud-est pastoral (Ali Sabieh), eMODIS, du 1er janvier au 10 août 2015.

    Source: USGS/FEWS NET

    Figure 1

    Source:

    In remote monitoring, a coordinator typically works from a nearby regional office. Relying on partners for data, the coordinator uses scenario development to conduct analysis and produce monthly reports. As less data may be available, remote monitoring reports may have less detail than those from countries with FEWS NET offices. Learn more about our work here.

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