The Trend and the Pattern of Seasonal Rainfall in the Period 1993 – 2018 in Embu East Sub County, Kenya
Kenya, like many countries in the world, is vulnerable to climate variability and change. The livelihood of the people in Embu East Sub-county is highly dependent on rain-fed agriculture so climatic threats affect food and animal production. Climate variability has negatively affected mixed crop-livestock production. The objective of this study was: to establish the trend in seasonal rainfall in the period (1993-2018). The study used a descriptive survey research design guided by the Sustainable Livelihood Approach (SLA) theory. A sample of 364 subjects was composed of 362 heads of farming families and 2 Agricultural Field Officers. Data was obtained through the study of rainfall records in Embu Meteorological Stations, administration of household questionnaires, and interview schedule. The Methods of data analysis and presentation included time-series line graphs to show the trend, frequency tables, and percentages. The coefficient of variation was used to check the homogeneity of March-April-MAY and October-November-December seasons. A paired sample was used to test the hypothesis. The findings established that the rainfall trend was irregular between the years 1993-2018. The onset and the cessation of the MAM and OND varied significantly even though the MAM rainfall was on the upward trend and that of the OND was on the downward trend. The study recommends the following strategies the need to establish more rainfall stations in the study area. Policymakers should build the capacity of the farmers on how to exploit MAM fully and OND seasons and design a more efficient and interactive approach among the climate scientist-decision makers and the farmers to ensure effective communication on rainfall trends and pattern.