El Niño: Preparedness and Response Situation report – July 2016

El Niño: Preparedness and Response Situation report – July 2016
Jul 2016

Key messages

  • The impact of the current El Niño is overwhelming for any one agency or government and requires concerted and decisive assistance from the international community.
  • This is primarily a food and agriculture crisis. Of the almost USD 4 billion required to meet the humanitarian demands of El Niño affected countries, almost 80 percent is for food security and agriculture.
  • Without joint action, the economic and social gains made by the affected countries will be diminished and progress against the Sustainable Development Goals will falter.
  • The importance of early action cannot be underestimated. Early action saves lives, conserves resources and results in more effective responses. Timeliness of early action interventions is crucial to address needs on the ground and there is a need for a strong livelihood recovery programme within the broader multi-sectoral response.
  • In Southern Africa, we have a 3-month window of opportunity before the 2016/17 planning rains begin. If we miss this, millions of rural families will be forced into dependence on expensive humanitarian assistance well into 2018.
  • With the likely onset of La Niña, we must act immediately, so that we can reduce negative impacts on communities already affected by El Niño while capitalizing on potential positive effects.