General description of the country
According to the Population Estimation Survey, Somalia’s population in 2014 was 12.3 million and is estimated to have increased to over 15 million by the end of 2018. Its people are extremely young. An estimated 46 per cent of the Somali population are children (aged 0–14), and 27 per cent are adolescents and youth (aged 15–29). Together they make up almost three-quarters of the Somali population1
. Forty-two per cent of the population are urban dwellers, 23 per cent are rural, 26 per cent are classified as nomadic, and 9 per cent are IDPs.2
The Somali diaspora forms an important part of the larger Somali population and can be found all around the world.
Overview of the key political structure on the environment
Somalia has made significant strides over the past years on its journey towards peace, security and sustainable development.
However, three decades of state collapse, environmental degradation, conflict and political instability have severely curtailed progress, meaning that the country effectively had to be rebuilt from the ground up. Progress towards the 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals is slow and uneven.
While significant challenges remain in accelerating progress on the SDGs in this “Decade of Action”, there is reason for optimism.
The NDP-9 provides an overarching planning framework for the Government of Somalia and international partners, and is based on a comprehensive, multidimensional poverty reduction strategy based on sustainable, inclusive and green growth and economic diversification. Somalia’s move towards debt relief and the prospect of access to concessional financing is a further positive development.
Summary of key environmental issues
The increasing occurrence of climatic crises, environmental degradation and dwindling natural resources further compound the fragile humanitarian situation, which impacts lives and livelihoods, increases food insecurity, and drives large-scale displacement and irregular migration. This in turn puts further strain on the state’s already limited capacity to provide services. Levels of resilience are low.
Reliance on vulnerable productive sectors, a weak financial sector, low levels of industrialization and overall poor economic performance mean unemployment remains stubbornly high, particularly for women and youth, thereby posing risks to peace and stability.
Vulnerability and weak resilience in Somalia are almost universal. However, certain segments of Somali society face additional impediments to participation in the country’s path to sustainable development, putting them at risk of being left behind. Indeed, the exclusion of the most vulnerable means that development cannot be considered truly sustainable
- 1Independent Panel of Experts, “Population Estimates for Somalia, 2013–2018” (unpublished).
- 2UNFPA, Population Estimation Survey 2014, p. 22, https://somalia.unfpa.org/sites/default/files/pub-pdf/Population-Estima…- PESS-2013-2014.pdf.