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The impacts of climate variability on welfare in rural Mexico

  • Skoufias, Emmanuel
  • Vinha, Katja
  • Conroy, Hector V.

This paper examines the impacts of weather shocks, defined as rainfall or growing degree days more than a standard deviation from their respective long-run means, on household consumption per capita and child height-for-age. The results reveal that the current risk-coping mechanisms are not effective in protecting these two dimensions of welfare from erratic weather patterns. These findings imply that the change in the patterns of climatic variability associated with climate change is likely to reduce the effectiveness of the current coping mechanisms even more and thus increase household vulnerability further. The results reveal that weather shocks have substantial (negative as well as positive) effects on welfare that vary across regions (North vs. Center and South) and socio-economic characteristics (education and gender). The heterogeneous impacts of climatic variability suggest that a"tailored"approach to designing programs aimed at decreasing the sensitivity and increasing the capacity of rural households to adapt to climate change in Mexico is likely to be more effective.

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Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 5555.

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Date of creation: 01 Feb 2011
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Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:5555
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  1. Skoufias, Emmanuel & Quisumbing, Agnes R., 2003. "Consumption insurance and vulnerability to poverty," FCND briefs 155, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  2. Case, Anne & Fertig, Angela & Paxson, Christina, 2005. "The lasting impact of childhood health and circumstance," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 365-389, March.
  3. Hoddinott, John & Kinsey, Bill, 2001. " Child Growth in the Time of Drought," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 63(4), pages 409-36, September.
  4. Harold Alderman & John Hoddinott & Bill Kinsey, 2006. "Long term consequences of early childhood malnutrition," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(3), pages 450-474, July.
  5. Jonathan Morduch, 1995. "Income Smoothing and Consumption Smoothing," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(3), pages 103-114, Summer.
  6. Sharon L. Maccini & Dean Yang, 2008. "Under the Weather: Health, Schooling, and Economic Consequences of Early-Life Rainfall," NBER Working Papers 14031, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Hanan G. Jacoby & Emmanuel Skoufias, 1998. "Testing Theories of Consumption Behavior Using Information on Aggregate Shocks: Income Seasonality and Rainfall in Rural India," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 80(1), pages 1-14.
  8. John A. Maluccio, & John Hoddinott & Jere R. Behrman & Reynaldo Martorell & Agnes R. Quisumbing & Aryeh D. Stein, 2003. "The Impact of Nutrition during Early Childhood on Education among Guatemalan Adults," PIER Working Paper Archive 06-026, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania, revised 01 Aug 2006.
  9. Christopher R. Udry & Esther Duflo, 2004. "Intrahousehold Resource Allocation in Cote D'Ivoire: Social Norms, Separate Accounts and Consumption Choices," Yale School of Management Working Papers ysm407, Yale School of Management.
  10. Olivier Desch�nes & Michael Greenstone, 2007. "The Economic Impacts of Climate Change: Evidence from Agricultural Output and Random Fluctuations in Weather," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(1), pages 354-385, March.
  11. Hallie Eakin, 2000. "Smallholder Maize Production and Climatic Risk: A Case Study from Mexico," Climatic Change, Springer, vol. 45(1), pages 19-36, April.
  12. Udry, Christopher, 1994. "Risk and Insurance in a Rural Credit Market: An Empirical Investigation in Northern Nigeria," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(3), pages 495-526, July.
  13. Glewwe, Paul & Miguel, Edward A., 2008. "The Impact of Child Health and Nutrition on Education in Less Developed Countries," Handbook of Development Economics, Elsevier.
  14. Wolfram Schlenker & Michael J. Roberts, 2006. "Estimating the impact of climate change on crop yields: The importance of non-linear temperature effects," Discussion Papers 0607-01, Columbia University, Department of Economics.
  15. Sarah Harrower & John Hoddinott, 2005. "Consumption Smoothing in the Zone Lacustre, Mali," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 14(4), pages 489-519, December.
  16. de la Fuente, Alejandro, 2010. "Remittances and Vulnerability to Poverty in Rural Mexico," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 38(6), pages 828-839, June.
  17. Paxson, Christina H, 1992. "Using Weather Variability to Estimate the Response of Savings to Transitory Income in Thailand," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(1), pages 15-33, March.
  18. John Hoddinott, 2006. "Shocks and their consequences across and within households in Rural Zimbabwe," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 42(2), pages 301-321.
  19. Skoufias, Emmanuel, 2007. "Poverty alleviation and consumption insurance: Evidence from PROGRESA in Mexico," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 36(4), pages 630-649, August.
  20. Thomas, Timothy & Christiaensen, Luc & Do, Quy Toan & Trung, Le Dang, 2010. "Natural disasters and household welfare : evidence from Vietnam," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5491, The World Bank.
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