Assessing the Livelihood Vulnerability to Impact of Climate Change in Western Bhutan

Sonam Wangmo *

Department of Environment and Climate Studies, College of Natural Resources, Royal University of Bhutan, Bhutan.

Ugyen Dorji

Department of Forestry Science, College of Natural Resources, Royal University of Bhutan, Bhutan.

Nedup Dorji

Department of Animal Science, College of Natural Resources, Royal University of Bhutan, Bhutan.

*Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.


Climate change possesses vagaries threats to the subsequent livelihood of the people in Bhutan and it is crucial to enhance adaptive capacity. Therefore, building resiliency requires information on vulnerability of the system of interest. Therefore, this study assessed smallholder farmer’s vulnerability to impacts of climate change and variability in western parts (Punakha, Wangdue, Gasa) of Bhutan. A survey was conducted from 392 randomly selected households based on major components of sociodemographic profiles, livelihood strategies, health, social network, food, water and natural disaster and climate variability. Data was analyzed using Livelihood Vulnerability Index approach (LVI) and IPCC framework approach (LVI-IPCC). The result indicated that the LVI (range 0.39 to 0.43) and LVI-IPCC (range -0.018 to 0.030) varied across the districts. Punakha district (0.43) was most vulnerable by the LVI approach, whereas Gasa district (0.03) revealed as most vulnerable using LVI-IPCC approach. The rate of vulnerability in a district varied according to their degree of exposure and adaptive capacity to the impacts of climate change among smallholder farmers. Higher exposure to climatic extremes, dependency on natural resources and weak social networking were recognized as components that determine vulnerability. The results are expected to serve an indication to design appropriate intervention to cope with climate change impacts and increase resiliency for sustainable livelihood.

Keywords: Climate change impacts, farmer, exposure, adaptive capacity, livelihood, vulnerability

How to Cite

Wangmo, S., Dorji , U., & Dorji, N. (2023). Assessing the Livelihood Vulnerability to Impact of Climate Change in Western Bhutan. Journal of Agriculture and Ecology Research International, 24(6), 21–39.


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