Madagascar Dashboard
Overview
  • Overview
  • Risk Screening Overview
  • Climate Baseline
  • Natural Hazards
  • Climate Future
  • Impacts & Vulnerabilities
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Recent Trends
Temperature 0.2°C
north region
0.1°C
south region
 
Rainfall no obvious trend  
Length of dry spells central and east coastal regions  
Winter and spring rainfall Explore Further
Key Sectors
Agriculture
Health
Fisheries
Water Resources
Coastal Resources Explore Further
Natural Hazards
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Overview
Madagascar is a large island nation located in the southwestern part of the Indian Ocean, just off the south-eastern edge of the African continent. The 2009 United Nations Development Program (UNDP) Human Development Report classifies Madagascar as a least developed, low-income, and food deficient country and ranked it 145th out of 177 countries. Since its independence in 1960, annual per capita income has fallen by 40%, with Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the 1990s falling 50% below that of the 1980s. Since 2000, however, GDP has seen a steady rise, signaling sustained economic growth. Nevertheless, poverty levels remain high, with much of this poverty concentrated in rural areas, where subsistence agriculture is practiced to meet basic needs. Food security remains a significant challenge and, according to 2005 estimates, 25% of the country’s rural population is classified as food insecure. The country’s population is also growing steadily, with an estimated 19 million people living in Madagascar in 2009 and an average population growth rate of 3%. The key sectors of the country’s national economy include agriculture, fishery, and livestock production. Cash crops - sugarcane, vanilla, coffee, cloves and cocoa - are grown primarily in the east and northwest of the country.- Subsistence crops - rice, cassava, beans, bananas, and peanuts - dominate household consumption. The country encompasses a diversity of ecosystems, with a highland plateau extending throughout the center, fringed by low-lying coastal areas on all sides. The highest elevation on the island is Mt. Maromokotro at 2,880 meters (m). Although the country’s ecosystems have been severely degraded due to logging and agriculture, Madagascar hosts a unique and increasingly threatened diversity of flora and fauna, including several rare orchid species and lemurs. A number of rivers traverse Madagascar, including the Socia, Betsiboka, Manambao, Mangoro, Tsiribihina, Mangoky, Manannara, and Onilahy. Development challenges loom large for Madagascar, where poverty rates hover at 71%, illiteracy is at 70%, and the political situation is uncertain. In addition, Madagascar faces significant risks imposed by an increasingly variable and changing climate. Cyclones, droughts, and floods are all common occurrences in the country. Between 1980 and 2010 alone, Madagascar was struck by 35 cyclones and floods, five periods of severe droughts, five earthquakes, and six epidemics. These events are becoming increasingly frequent and intense, affecting food security, drinking water supply and irrigation, public health systems, environmental management, and lifestyle.
Selected Indicators for Impacts and Vulnerabilities
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