The Cumulative Effects of Climate Change and Natural Disasters on Food Security and Child Nutrition: A Natural Experiment Using the 2015 Nepal Earthquake

Heather Randell , University of Maryland
Amir Sapkota, University of Maryland

Climate change is associated with a greater frequency of extreme weather events, which leaves affected populations with less time to recover from an environmental shock before being impacted by a subsequent event. In this paper, we ask how exposure to consecutive environmental shocks impacts household food security and child nutrition in Nepal. We will link data from the 2016 Nepal Demographic and Health Survey to district-level data on severity of exposure to the 2015 Nepali earthquake as well as high-resolution climate data including frequencies of extreme heat and precipitation events. We will exploit regional variation in exposure to the earthquake and climatic conditions to isolate the independent and joint effects of each set of conditions. In light of ongoing increases in the frequency of extreme events and natural disasters, this paper will help identify how exposure to multiple shocks in close succession impacts food security and child nutrition.

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 Presented in Session 234. Climate Change and Population Health