Munich Personal RePEc Archive

Effect of Disasters and Climate Change on Poverty and Inequality in India

Tripathi, Sabyasachi (2019): Effect of Disasters and Climate Change on Poverty and Inequality in India.

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This study assesses the impact of disasters and climate change on poverty and inequality in India from 1900 to 2018. Country level analysis shows that natural disasters, mainly flood, is increasing over time. Almost 41% of the total deaths in the period 1900–2018 occurred between 1991and 2018 due to natural disasters. Climate change variables show a whopping 545% increase in the CO2 emissions, 7% increase in the mean temperature, and a mammoth 835% increase in annual rainfall from 1960 to 2014. Poverty figures show that there is a 23.4% decline in poverty from 1993–94 to 2011–12. Inequality in India has increased from 0.33 in 1973–74 to 0.36 to 2011–12. The calculated correlation values show that the rate of poverty is negatively associated with CO2 emissions, annual mean temperature, and annual rainfall. A state-level analysis shows that the correlation between rainfall and inequality is positive. Statewise panel data model analysis from the period of 2004–05 to 2011–12 shows that natural disasters and climate change, which are measured by the change in rainfall, has a positive effect on state-level poverty and inequality in India. Finally, we suggest that eco-friendly economic growth strategies and redistributive policies are essential for sustainable economic growth in India.

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