Climate Change in Tanzania
The Vice Presidents Office has published its
Initial National Communication on Climate Change to the UNFCCC in 2003.
The Non-governmental organisation Centre for Energy Environment Science and Technology Foundation
(CEEST) has contributed strongly to its publication and acts as the secretary to the National Climate
Change Committee, which the Government chairs through the Vice President's office.
CEEST has have great
scientific expertise regarding greenhouse gas emissions, conservation of natural resources and they are
also involved in the practical implementation of projects of climate change mitigation and adaptation.
Main impacts of climate change
Tanzania is most severely affected by the receding glaciers of Kilimanjaro. The ice cap of Kilimanjaro
has decreased by 82% since it was first surveyed in 1912. Rivers dry out in the summer and Tanzania is
increasingly affected by droughts. On the other hand, precipitation is expected to become more intense
during rainy seasons, leading to floods and the degradation of soil. Tansania also faces other environmental
hazards immediately related to climate change, such as:
- loss of vegetation due to forest fires leading to floods
- Soil erosion and loss of fertile land for agriculture during the rainy seasons
- Unsustainable irrigation resulting and the loss of water resources
- Unsustainable mining activities resulting in tree felling and loss of vegetation cover
- About 91,300 hectares of forest are lost every year leading to land degradation and hence desertification
- Water levels in important basins are decreasing
- Wells, rivers, dams and other water resources have dried
Coffee and tea production
Tea and Arabica coffee are grown in Tanzanias highlands, which receive high precipitation. The highland
zone includes the Northeastern Highlands: the Usambara Mountains, Mt. Kilimanjaro and Mt. Meru, as well
as the Southern Highlands: Mt. Rungwe, Livingstone ranges, and Mt. Mbeya. The sited tea and coffee areas
of Wakulima /Katumba Tea Factory in Rungwe / Tukuyu area and the Kilimanjaro Native Coffee Union (KNCU)
in Moshi / Kilimanjaro are in this zone. Robusta coffee is grown around Lake Victoria. KNCU is one of the
pilot goups participating in the second round of the risk and opportunity assessments.
AdapCC supports tea and coffee farmers in Tanzania to confront the environmental risks that intensify
through climate change. AdapCC aims to build capacities in the grower organisations that enable them to
find long term adaptation strategies.