Situation Update: Locust Crisis in Madagascar - 23 August 2013
Since April 2012, Madagascar has been facing a plague of the Malagasy Migratory Locust, that threatens the livelihoods of 13 million people in the country, nine million of whom earn a living from agriculture.
• Two-thirds of the country could be infested by September 2013. Findings from a damage assessment conducted in May 2013 indicate that rice crop losses due to locusts in 2012/13 vary from 10 to 40 percent in 17 of Madagascar’s 22 regions.
• The Ministry of Agriculture of Madagascar declared a national disaster on 27 November 2012 and requested assistance from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) to address the current locust plague.
• It is estimated that at least three successive locust control campaigns costing USD 41.5 million are required to treat over 2 million hectares between September 2013 and September 2016 (1.5 million hectares in 2013/14; 500 000 hectares in 2014/15 and 150 000 hectares in 2015/16).
• The three-year programme jointly prepared by FAO and the Ministry of Agriculture in response to the plague, implemented and coordinated by FAO, focuses on:
o Improving the monitoring and analysis of the locust situation
o Large-scale aerial control operations
o Monitoring and mitigating the impact of locust control operations on human health and the environment
o Assessing the effectiveness of each locust campaign and the impact of locusts on crops and pastures
• The current funding gap is USD 24.8 million of which USD 5.7 million are still urgently required for FAO to be able to carry out an effective large-scale locust campaign in 2013/14 and USD 19.1 million are required for the 2014/15 and 2015/16 campaigns. Should all the funds not be available on time to undertake the