Coping with climate change and its impact on productivity, income, and poverty: Evidence from the Himalayan region of Pakistan uri icon

abstract

  • The current study explores the climate-risk mitigating strategies adopted by farmers and their impact on household income, poverty levels and wheat yield in the Himalayan region of Pakistan. This study is based on a primary dataset collected from 500 farmers through a field survey from the seven districts of the Himalayan region of northern Pakistan: Ghizer, Gilgit, Diamer, Astore, Skardu, Ghance, and Hunza-Nagar. A multivariate probit was employed to estimate the determinants of choice of adaptation strategies by farmers and a propensity score matching approach was used to estimate the impact of coping strategies on wellbeing. The most common climate-risk management strategies adopted at farm level include an adjustment in the sowing time, adoption of resistant varieties, tree plantation, non-farm participation as well as crop-livestock interaction. The impact of all these risk-management strategies was estimated individually as well as jointly. The empirical results indicated that farmers with higher levels of education and secured land rights mostly adopt more climate-risk mitigating strategies. The overall PSM results show that household income levels are high (in the range of PKR 1658-2610 per month), indicating that those households adopting climate-risk management strategies have higher income levels. The ATT results for the wheat yield are in the range of 42-65 kg per hectare, indicating that farmers adopting climate-risk management strategies have higher wheat yields. The ATT results for poverty are negative and significant, indicating that households adopting climate-risk management strategies have lower poverty levels (in the range of 2-4%). Increasing public awareness and supporting households in risk-mitigating strategies in the Himalayan region could be a crucial policy measure in reducing vulnerability to climate change, thereby increasing wellbeing.

publication date

  • 2017
  • 2017