New initiative on climate change adaptation

Nairobi, 1 March 2016 – icipe and the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland have launched a new initiative aimed at supporting the ability of smallholder farming families living around fragile mountain ecosystems in eastern Africa to adapt to the impacts of climate variability and change through research-based interventions has been launched.  

Known as the Adaptation for Ecosystem Resilience in Africa (AFERIA), the two-year project will disseminate and communicate research findings, insights and interactions of climate change and food security, developed through the Climate Change Impacts on Ecosystem Services and Food Security in eastern Africa (CHIESA, (, which was implemented by icipe,the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland and various partners, from 2011–2015.

Her Excellency, Tarja Fernandez, Ambassador, Embassy of Finland in Kenya, and Dr Chris Prideaux, icipe Director of Research and Partnerships, sign the agreement for the launch of AFERIA.

AFERIA will facilitate the implementation of improved technologies and methods for climate change adaptation such as integrated pest management, drip irrigation and conservation agriculture. In addition, the project will focus on building the capacity of national agricultural research and extension services and smallholder farmers to support the implementation of community-based climate change adaptation action plans.

Globally, and in Africa in particular, sensitive mountain ecosystems provide invaluable services, such as water provision, which are seriously threatened by accelerating land cover and land use change on the upper slopes where most of the remaining mountain forests are located.  The capacity of these mountain water towers to store moisture, supply freshwater to the lowlands and reduce peak flood flows during extreme weather events has been compromised mainly by human activities, such as deforestation. The impacts are   alsoamplified by increasing temperatures and variability in rainfall due to global climate change.

Through climate change adaptation action plans and technology transfer, the AFERIA Project will disseminate research findings on climate change impacts and implement research-based interventions in different agro-ecological zones including: the Taita Hills and Murang’a County in Kenya;  Mount Kilimanjaro region in Tanzania and the Jimma Highlands of Ethiopia. The Project will cooperate with national and local organisations to reach smallholder farmers, especially women and special needs groups. Among the adaptation technologies to be transferred to communities are: drip irrigation, roof rain water harvesting, conservation agriculture, farm forestry and insect pest management. 

AFERIA will enable icipe to extend the Centre’s extensive expertise in developing and extending environmentally-friendly management tools and strategies towards improving the livelihoods of smallholder farmers across Africa. The initiative will also support the achievement of the four focal points of Finland’s Development Cooperation Policy of 2016, especially to improve food security, enhance access to water and energy, and to promote sustainable use of natural resources.

For more information, or to schedule an interview with the AFERIA Project Coordinator, Dr.Tino Johansson, please contact Ms Karen Wambui, Tel: +254 (0)20 8632711 or Email: