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A Pilot Study: Economic Analysis of Flood related EbAs

Flood inundates settlement in Udayapur district

Floods triggered by climate change are causing significant human and economic loss and such devastation will further accelerate in the future as Nepal’s average temperature increases and precipitation patterns will likely cause winter droughts and irregular high flooding and debris flow causing inundation of communities during the rainy season. Floods are the topmost hazard in Udayapur district with regard to loss and its repetition/frequency (MoAC and FAO, 2011). MoHA (2010) documented the flood and landslide events that occurred in Udayapur district and documented 91 events between 2001 and 2009, which resulted in 535 deaths, 274 injuries and a total property loss of NPR. 631,694,180.00.


Interaction with local community of Udayapur district by Research team

This research was initiated by IDS Nepal in collaboration with ICIMOD. The objectives of this research are: (i) Document all possible Ecosystem-based adaptations and engineering options, (ii) Economic analysis of individual ecosystem-based adaptations and engineering options; and (iii) Recommend appropriate and cost effective ecosystem-based adaptations and engineering options to be implemented. This pilot research would be an economic insight for policy makers to implement cost effective adaptation options as per NAPA (2011)/LAPA (2012) within the framework of Nepal Climate Change Policy 2011.

Limited gabion wall to reduce flood impacts in Udayapur district (Ajgada village)

For this research, the team conducted the exploratory field visit in Udayapur district to select the site, accompanied by representatives from a local NGO (Navaprabhat). According to their recommendation, the team visited two villages and interacted with the local people of both villages to identify the needs and perceptions of the community.

The research team (Dr. Dinesh C. Devkota, Dr. Bhaksar Karky, Mr. Sujit Karmacharya and Mr. Subash C. Ghimire) visited Ajgada village (Ksedi River Watershed) in January 2014. After a short briefing about the purpose of the study, the local people were very enthusiastic to share their experiences and expectations. Mr. Bom Bahadur Karki (Community Leader) of Ajgada village explained the vulnerability of flood and need for mitigation measures. He stated, “the width of Ksedi River is increasing and the level of the river is higher than the level of community due to sedimentation from the Churia range. It has always been a threat to our community during rainy season”. The community expects to have certain mitigation measures immediately from Government and other supportive organizations, such as construction of a gabion wall along the river to mitigate the vulnerability of the community.Bank of Bauna River (Rupani village) in Udayapur district

Secondly, the research team also visited Rupani village (Bauna River Watershed). The Bauna River bank in Rupani village was embanked by a Gabion wall as well as Kans (Sachharum spp.) and Bamboo plantation on both sides of the river; but, the gabion walls are submerged (only the upper part of gabion wall is visible) due to sedimentation in river. While interacting with local people, Mr. Kul Bahadur Bhujel (Community leader) said that “this river (Bauna) flooding affects our village but after plantation of bamboo/Kans and construction of the gabion wall (supported by the Red cross, DDC, VDC and DSCO), the risk of flood was minimized”.

This exploratory field visit has helped to gain insight and observe the real scenario of the flooding and sedimentation in the Churia range and its implications, which require immediate actions in order to prevent vulnerability of the inhabitants in the Churia range. The current implemented measures are still inefficient and ineffective as they do not consider the underlying cause and focus only on effects. Therefore, the team selected Ajgada village (Ksedi River Watershed) for research purposes on the basis of vulnerability to flood, size of settlement area, the river’s origin from Churia range, and implemented measures to reduce flood impacts.

Dr. Devkota (Research Team Leader) further mentioned that “this field-based research study will provide real knowledge to policy makers and program developers to have the cost analysis of EbAs and EOs which will be a unique study for Nepal”.

Further, the team is working with a Civil Engineer/Overseer, a Watershed management expert/Ranger and an Economic analyst to estimate the cost of flood impacts, EOs, and EbAs. The team will also perform an economic analysis to recommend appropriate and cost effective EbAs and EOs to reduce vulnerability for sustainable management and increase livelihood in long run.

The research team,

Dr. Dinesh Chandra Devkota, is Visiting Professor CDES, TU and policy Advisor IDS Nepal

Prof. Dr. Govinda Nepal, is Policy Advisor IDS Nepal and Professor of Economics in TU

Dr. Bhaskar Singh Karky, Resource Economist – ICIMOD

Mr. Anil Shrestha, Climate Change Adaptation Expert –IDS Nepal

Mr. Sujit Karmacharya, Research Coordinator – IDS Nepal

Mr. Subash Chandra Ghimire, Research Assistant – IDS Nepal

 

Blogged by:

Sujit Karmacharya, Research Coordinator, IDS Nepal

Email: karmasujit@gmail.com