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Assessing the community vulnerability to natural disasters and climate change in the mountainous region of Pakistan

Laila Shahzad, Arifa Tahir, Faiza Sharif, Muhammad Waqas Ijaz

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Int. J. Biosci.13(3), 132-143, September 2018

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.12692/ijb/20.2.1-20

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It is maintained that mountainous communities are more susceptible to climatic changes and natural hazards owing to their weak socio-economic conditions and direct reliance on natural resources. This study was aimed at assessing the vulnerability and capacity of community living in mountains of District Mansehra of Khyber Phktonkhawa (KPK) province of Pakistan. A questionnaire was developed to collect data from three tehsils of district Mansehra. This questionnaire was designed to assess the six dimensions of vulnerability i.e. demographic vulnerability, socio-economic vulnerability, and physical vulnerability, vulnerability due to impacts of previous disasters, mitigation and adaptation capacity, and vulnerability due to climate change.  In order to compare the vulnerability of each tehsil, a vulnerability index ranging from 0 (low) to 1 (high) was developed. This vulnerability index inferred that Balakot (0.61) was highly vulnerable, and Oghi (0.43) & Mansehra (0.39) were medium vulnerable. It was observed that fragile topography along with poor demographic and socioeconomic conditions played a vital role in making Balakot highly vulnerable to future disasters. Community empowerment and disaster risk reduction initiatives at grass root level are much needed to reduce vulnerability and enhance people’s resilience.


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Assessing the community vulnerability to natural disasters and climate change in the mountainous region of Pakistan

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