In August 2006, a flash flood ripped through the province of Dire Dawa in eastern Ethiopia, leaving over 1,000 people dead and 10,000 more homeless. Deforestation and inappropriate agricultural practices were the primary causes of the devastation, and most of those killed were illegal migrants who lived in a squatter area of Dire Dawa which was prone to flooding as well as to inter-ethnic and religious violence.

A remarkable project has since begun to transform Dire Dawa, enabling the poorest people in the area to better withstand the ongoing challenges of climate change. Community members and ...


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