Responses to Weather and Climate: A Cross-Section Analysis of Rural Incomes

49 Pages Posted: 20 Apr 2016

See all articles by Frederik Noack

Frederik Noack

University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) - Donald Bren School of Environmental Science & Management; University of Kiel

Sven Wunder

Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR)

Arild Angelsen

Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU) - School of Economics and Business

Jan Börner

University of Bonn - Center for Development Research (ZEF)

Date Written: November 5, 2015

Abstract

How much do poor rural households rely on environmental extraction from natural ecosystems? And how does climate variability impact their livelihoods? This paper sheds light on these two questions with household income data from the Poverty and Environment Network pantropical data set, combined with climate data for the past three decades. The study finds that extraction of wild resources (from natural forests, bushlands, fallows, etc.) provides on average as much income (about 27 percent) as crops across the smallholder sample. The cross-section data on past reactions to household self-perceived economic shocks and observed production reactions to climate anomalies can, respectively, provide hints about livelihood vulnerability to current climate variability, which is likely to worsen with climate change. Forest extraction did not figure among the most favored response strategies to households? self-perceived economic shocks, but households undertake subtle substitutions in sector production in response to weather anomalies that accentuate suboptimal climatic conditions for cropping. By relying more on forest extraction and wages, households compensate quite successfully for declining crop incomes. This paints a cautiously optimistic picture about fairly flexible rural livelihood reactions to current climate variability, and featuring forests as potentially important in household coping strategies.

Keywords: Social Development & Poverty, Inequality, Energy and Mining, Energy and Environment, Climate Change and Environment, Global Environment, Science of Climate Change, Energy Demand, Climate Change and Health

Suggested Citation

Noack, Frederik and Wunder, Sven and Angelsen, Arild and Börner, Jan, Responses to Weather and Climate: A Cross-Section Analysis of Rural Incomes (November 5, 2015). World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 7478. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2688376

Frederik Noack (Contact Author)

University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) - Donald Bren School of Environmental Science & Management ( email )

4670 Physical Sciences North
Santa Barbara, CA 93106-5131
United States

University of Kiel

Olshausenstr. 40
D-24118 Kiel, Schleswig-Holstein 24118
Germany

Sven Wunder

Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) ( email )

P.O.Box 6596
JKPWB Jakarta 10065
Indonesia
+62 251 622622, ext. 414 (Phone)
+62 251 622100 (Fax)

Arild Angelsen

Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU) - School of Economics and Business ( email )

P.O. Box 5003
NO-1432 Aas
Norway

Jan Börner

University of Bonn - Center for Development Research (ZEF) ( email )

Walter-Flex-Str. 3
Bonn, NRW 53113
Germany

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
47
Abstract Views
288
PlumX Metrics