Combining innovative strategies for effective drought risk management: Costs and benefits of insurance and irrigation in Uttar Pradesh, India

Mechler R, Hochrainer-Stigler S, Singh P, Chopde S, & Wajih SA (2009). Combining innovative strategies for effective drought risk management: Costs and benefits of insurance and irrigation in Uttar Pradesh, India. In: [[Catalyzing Climate and Disaster Resilience]], ISET-Nepal, Kathmandu pp.223-250

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Abstract

Drought related disasters are a major factor contributing to endemic poverty, particularly in developing countries, where a large proportion of the population depends on agricultural livelihoods. Such disasters, and the associated impoverishment of large populations, are likely to grow if climate variability increases as a consequence of global change processes. Furthermore, while large-scale droughts may have the sufficient, immediate impact to draw the attention and concern of global actors, the increases in incremental losses associated with changes in the variability and unpredictability of climate conditions may have an equally great impact on vulnerable populations. Strategies for reducing this impact are, as a result, central to poverty alleviation and adaptation to climate change.

The case study presented here analyzes the costs and benefits of alternative strategies for mitigating the impact of drought on rural livelihoods in Uttar Pradesh, India. The case study explores both insurance mechanisms for spreading drought risk and, as an alternative, the development of groundwater irrigation for reducing such risk. The study draws attention toward approaches to drought mitigation that are based on integrated combinations of strategies, which may perform better than a single set of techniques or mechanisms. While the study is based on analysis within a relatively narrow case area, the results have more general implications for the development of effective strategies for responding to drought and other challenges associated with global climate change.

Our analysis indicates that a strategic combination of irrigation, plus an insurance strategy, has higher return rates than either technique practiced on its own. Specifically, the study suggests that the benefits of insurance are likely to decline in relation to the costs if climatic variability increases substantially because of climate change, thereby necessitating its use in combination with a more conventional strategy.

Item Type: Other
Research Programs: Risk and Vulnerability (RAV)
Bibliographic Reference: In: [[Catalyzing Climate and Disaster Resilience]], ISET-Nepal, Kathmandu pp.223-250
Related URLs:
Depositing User: IIASA Import
Date Deposited: 15 Jan 2016 08:42
Last Modified: 20 Jan 2016 16:45
URI: http://pure.iiasa.ac.at/9004

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