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Review of Current and Planned Adaptation Action in Kenya

In recent years, Kenya has achieved economic and human development gains, and adopted a new constitution that decentralizes greater decision-making authority to its 47 counties.

As explored in this report, climate change presents a test to this progress. The country continues to be challenged by water scarcity, high dependence on rain-fed agriculture, an expanding population, gender inequalities and high levels of multidimensional poverty. These factors contribute to Kenya’s vulnerability to climate change, particularly within its extensive arid and semi-arid lands (ASALs). Kenya has recognized its vulnerability to climate change and is establishing a comprehensive policy framework to guide and help implement its response to climate change. This includes creating a climate change bill, finalizing both its National Climate Change Response Strategy and its National Climate Change Action Plan (2013–2017), and establishing a National Climate Change Secretariat. In collaboration with its development partners, Kenya is also implementing adaptation actions that reduce the vulnerability of its agriculture, livestock and water sectors, among others, particularly in its ASALs. Yet there remains significant need to increase attention to climate change across key sectors, such as tourism and infrastructure, and strengthen the capacity of county governments to realize the benefits of devolution and fulfill their role in implementing adaptation actions. Greater efforts are also needed to strengthen knowledge development and exchange among communities of practice. These issues are explored within this report, which is one of a series of country reviews prepared by IISD to provide the Collaborative Adaptation Research Initiative in Africa and Asia (CARIAA) with a snapshot of adaptation action in its countries of engagement.