Assessing the impact of climate change/variability on water availability in Starch Factory Village, Lira District, Northern Uganda
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Climate change/variability is a pressing global concern with far-reaching implications for water resources in Uganda which lack a significant river system. This research investigates the impacts of climate change/variability on water availability in Lira District, an area which predominantly rely on rainfall for agriculture and domestic use. The study used a questionnaire to collect qualitative data. The results of the study were: The respondents revealed that the impacts of climate change/variability is becoming more and more damaging on water sources such as swamps, ponds, soil moisture and reservoirs leading to decreased water available for domestic use and aquatic lives, conflicts and displacement of people. Majority of the respondents also reported challenges such as experiencing high cost of purchasing water most times of the year, travelling long distances to access clean water and sharing of water with animals. Due to the above challenges, both economic and social well-being of the people in this community have been adversely affected due to increased rate of waterborne disease cases, decreased agricultural income, high expenditures on clean and safe drinking water and poor sanitation which placed financial burdens on households in the study area. This study therefore recommends appropriate coping strategies which are very essential in handling the impact of climate change/variability such as harvesting rain water, digging shallow wells and purchasing water from vendors coupled with the urgent need for coordinated efforts which involves the local people, NGOs, policy makers, government agencies, departments and ministries to address climate change impacts on water resources in Starch Factory village.