Kenya Environment - 2021


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Environment - current issues

water pollution from urban and industrial wastes; water shortage and degraded water quality from increased use of pesticides and fertilizers; flooding; water hyacinth infestation in Lake Victoria; deforestation; soil erosion; desertification; poaching

Environment - international agreements

party to: Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Climate Change-Paris Agreement, Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban, Desertification, Endangered Species, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping-London Convention, Marine Dumping-London Protocol, Marine Life Conservation, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Wetlands, Whaling

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements

Air pollutants

particulate matter emissions: 25.85 micrograms per cubic meter (2016 est.)

carbon dioxide emissions: 17.91 megatons (2016 est.)

methane emissions: 37.65 megatons (2020 est.)

Total water withdrawal

municipal: 495 million cubic meters (2017 est.)

industrial: 303 million cubic meters (2017 est.)

agricultural: 3.234 billion cubic meters (2017 est.)

Total renewable water resources

30.7 billion cubic meters (2017 est.)


varies from tropical along coast to arid in interior

Land use

agricultural land: 48.1% (2018 est.)

arable land: 9.8% (2018 est.)

permanent crops: 0.9% (2018 est.)

permanent pasture: 37.4% (2018 est.)

forest: 6.1% (2018 est.)

other: 45.8% (2018 est.)

Revenue from forest resources

forest revenues: 1.3% of GDP (2018 est.)

Revenue from coal

coal revenues: 0% of GDP (2018 est.)


urban population: 28.5% of total population (2021)

rate of urbanization: 4.09% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)

Major infectious diseases

degree of risk: very high (2020)

food or waterborne diseases: bacterial and protozoal diarrhea, hepatitis A, and typhoid fever

vectorborne diseases: malaria, dengue fever, and Rift Valley fever

water contact diseases: schistosomiasis

animal contact diseases: rabies

Food insecurity

exceptional shortfall in aggregate food production/supplies: due to poor seasonal rains, and desert locusts - about 2 million people were estimated to be severely food insecure in the March−May 2021 period, reflecting the poor performance of both the October−December 2020 “short-rains” and the March−May 2021 “long-rains” that affected crop and livestock production in northern and eastern pastoral, agro-pastoral and marginal agriculture areas; other limiting factors include the measures implemented to curb the spread of the COVID‑19 pandemic which affected off‑farm income earning opportunities, including petty trade, charcoal and firewood sales, and to localized but significant locust‑induced pasture losses (2021)

Waste and recycling

municipal solid waste generated annually: 5,595,099 tons (2010 est.)

municipal solid waste recycled annually: 447,608 tons (2009 est.)

percent of municipal solid waste recycled: 8% (2009 est.)

NOTE: The information regarding Kenya on this page is re-published from the 2021 World Fact Book of the United States Central Intelligence Agency and other sources. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Kenya 2021 information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Kenya 2021 should be addressed to the CIA or the source cited on each page.

This page was last modified 16 Dec 23, Copyright © 2023 ITA all rights reserved.