What you need to know:
- Some activists want the devolved unit to step up efforts to inform the public about climate change funding, including Financing Locally Led Climate Actions (FLLoCA).
- Mr Ochweyo, who represents Community Voice Action Network as the coordinator, says there needs to be transparency about the flow of FLLOCA funding to Homabay county.
Environmental experts warn that the country may witness increased disease infections associated with climate change should county governments fail to develop policies to protect their people from harsh weather patterns.
Mr Clifford Omondi, a climate scientist and member of the Environment Institute of Kenya, says extreme weather conditions such as increased temperatures, a common sign of climate change, have been recorded in different areas.
“Climate change is associated with more frequent and severe wildfires, extreme weather events, droughts, and pollution—all of which impact our food, water, air, and overall well-being of the people. There needs to be a solution to this problem, and governments must act fast,” offers the environmentalist.
Although counties like Homabay have policies and legal frame works on climate change, environmental activists say that a lot more needs to be done.
Some activists want the devolved unit to step up efforts to inform the public about climate change funding, including Financing Locally Led Climate Actions (FLLoCA).
Homa Bay Civil Society organisation Network Secretary General Leone Achieng says there needs to be a higher level of awareness about FLLoCA, “many community members don’t know about FLLoCA in terms of goals, objectives, and categories of grants.”
Mr Ochweyo, who represents Community Voice Action Network as the coordinator, says there needs to be transparency about the flow of FLLOCA funding to the county.
“There is a need for the county leadership to communicate and provide periodic updates to avoid unnecessary speculations, double reporting using other funds that focus on climate change programmes, and misrepresent facts about the funds,” the activist says.
On his part, Mr Omondi calls for strengthened health systems within the county and national government to counter the risks associated with climate change.
“Climate crisis is a medical crisis. We have witnessed negative impacts of climate change, which expose individuals to a myriad of health conditions to different groups of people, especially the vulnerable groups,” he says.
According to the climatologist, climate change may also impact mental health, especially when people think of what the weather might be like.
“When the ecosystem is lost or destroyed, it reduces food production. This brings about increased inequality and poverty because people cannot have enough resources to get food,” Omondi says.
He calls for a fast response to climate change and preparedness to counter the risks associated with extreme weather.