The stark reality of climate change has highlighted the financial obligations rich polluting nations, especially in the global North, owe communities and countries most impacted and now unprepared to deal with the unavoidable cost of the climate crisis. East Africa is one of the world’s worst-hit regions by climate change and is now experiencing its worst climate-induced extreme weather, fuelling an alarming hunger crisis, despite contributing almost nothing to global carbon emissions. Over 31.5 million people are currently facing acute hunger across Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, and South Sudan.
The devastating droughts in Ethiopia, Kenya, and Somalia, as well as floods in South Sudan, have costed the region a loss amounting to a staggering 15 to 30 billion dollars between 2020 and 2022- that is 2-4% of its annual GDP.1 Farmers and pastoralists were exceptionally hit. Oxfam estimates that between 2021 and 2023 the four countries have lost approximately $7.4 billion worth of livestock alone. Millions of already struggling people saw their animals die and lose their ability to grow, sell, or eat nutritious food, plunging them into even greater poverty and hunger.