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Southern Africa Climate Outlook Summary and the potential impact of the predicted El Niño, 2015

The outcome of the recently-convened Southern Africa Regional Climate Outlook Forum (SARCOF) and the potential impact of the predicted El Niño on the region, both point to an increased risk of another poor rainfall season and a significant rise in food insecurity.

This year the impact is expected to be similar to the one in 1997/1998, when poor rains affected many of the same countries that are currently struggling through a season of drought, including Angola, Botswana, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe. South Africa, for example, experienced a 24% drop in maize production between 1997 and 1998. In 1992, El Niño caused the region’s worst drought in a century, affecting around 86 million people, 72% of the population. As Eastern Africa usually receives higher rainfall during El Niño, Tanzania, particularly the northern half, is in contrast expected to receive above-normal to normal rains.

Operation(s)/ Webspace(s): 
United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Original Publication Date: 
23 Sep 2015
Map/Infographic Type: 
Humanitarian Snapshot
Early Warning
Information Management
Natural Disasters