The el Niño reports
What is el Niño?
El Niño is a weather phenomenon caused by unusually warm water in the Pacific Ocean, resulting in extreme weather patterns around the world.
Why is el Niño important now?
Since March 2015 a strong el Niño has been building up. The conditions mean that it strengthened towards the end of last year and because of that, it may be one of the strongest recorded in 30 years. Now, in 2016, the effects of the weather front are being felt in communities around the world.
Climate forecasters predict that struggling areas of East Africa, Southern Africa, the Pacific Islands, South East Asia and Central America are most at risk of the extreme weather.
What is the impact?
Children and adults in these areas of concern can face malnutrition, a lack of clean water, low crop yields, all culminating in forced displacement. In Eastern Africa alone it’s estimated that 18.5 million people are currently facing food insecurity. Ethiopia is facing one of its worst droughts in decades.
The day-to-day shortage is more than apparent, what is unknown is the devastating effect el Niño will have on this generation in the future.
What is Plan International doing?
Working in the local communities, Plan International has donated seeds to farmers and families to help beat the droughts. Water trucks have been sent out into neighbourhoods where water is scare, ensuring that children can carry on at school, despite schools running without drinking water.
We are providing health education for thousands of parents – so that they can look for immediate signs of malnutrition. In Ethiopia, Plan International has supported over 174,000 children.
However, the work is never ending.
Why are we focusing on el Niño?
Urgent international support is needed, but this is an issue that nobody is talking about. We want this to change and work together to help support others in the face of this emergency.
Over the next few weeks we’ll be focusing on the impact el Niño has on the health, education, water and sanitation and the economics of the children in the countries most affected by the disaster. Look out for our updates.
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