Testing the "Safety Net" Hypothesis

Authors: Matthew Cooper*, University of Maryland
Topics: Human-Environment Geography
Keywords: Climate Shocks, Safety Nets, Ecosystem-Based Adaptation, Ecosystem Services
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/5/2019
Start / End Time: 5:00 PM / 6:40 PM
Room: Governor's Room, Omni, East
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


A wide variety of studies support idea that natural areas can act as a safety net to help rural communities during years of climate shocks and agricultural failure. However, these studies are often highly localized and site specific. Furthermore, they often rely on retrospective or hypothetical surveys, rather than incorporating data on actual dietary or nutrition outcomes. Therefore, we integrate a large number of geolocated surveys on nutrition outcomes with data on precipitation and natural land cover to test the hypothesis that natural areas can be a safety during climate shocks like precipitation extremes. We further highlight areas where natural areas are most likely to act as a safety net, with an aim to inform spatial planning in conservation and guide interventions that can support local food security.

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