The Impacts of Climate Change on the Poor in Disadvantaged Regions

Barbier, E.B. and J.P. Hochard. 2018. Review of Environmental Economics and Policy 12(1):26-47. DOI.org/10.1093/reep/rex023

Posted: 30 Jul 2018

See all articles by Edward B. Barbier

Edward B. Barbier

Colorado State University, Fort Collins - Department of Economics

Jacob P. Hochard

University of Wyoming

Date Written: July 8, 2018

Abstract

Populations in developing countries that are located in less-favored agricultural areas (LFAA) – i.e., agricultural lands constrained by difficult terrain, poor soil quality, limited rainfall, etc. or with limited access to markets – and rural low-elevation coastal zones (LECZ) – i.e., coasts that have less than 10 meters (m) elevation – are not only at risk from the most severe and long-lasting climate change impacts; they are also susceptible to poverty-environment traps (over-reliance on marginal agricultural land and resource commons, which leads to stagnant, low incomes) that further increase their vulnerability to these impacts. We estimate that approximately 586 million people with high infant mortality live in LFAA and 85 million with high infant mortality live in rural LECZ, although both of these populations declined between 2000 and 2010. Nearly all of these people are in low-income or lower middle-income countries, with twenty countries accounting for most of the LFAA or rural LECZ populations with high infant mortality. We also examine the economic and environmental impacts of climate change on the rural poor in LFAA and LECZ and discuss policy strategies for mitigating the impacts of climate change on poverty among rural households in LFAA and LECZ.

Keywords: climate change, developing countries, less-favored agricultural area, low-elevation coastal zone, poverty-environment trap, rural poverty

JEL Classification: Q54, Q56, O13

Suggested Citation

Barbier, Edward B. and Hochard, Jacob P., The Impacts of Climate Change on the Poor in Disadvantaged Regions (July 8, 2018). Barbier, E.B. and J.P. Hochard. 2018. Review of Environmental Economics and Policy 12(1):26-47. DOI.org/10.1093/reep/rex023. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3210365

Edward B. Barbier (Contact Author)

Colorado State University, Fort Collins - Department of Economics ( email )

Fort Collins, CO 80523-1771
United States

Jacob P. Hochard

University of Wyoming

Box 3434 University Station
Laramie, WY 82070
United States

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