Determination of drought vulnerability indexes in municipalities of the semiarid region of the Paraiba State, Brazil

Eliamin Eldan Queiroz Rosendo, Hamilcar José Almeida Filgueira, Tarciso Cabral da Silva, Bartolomeu Israel de Souza, Marcelo Henriques da Silva Júnior

Tuesday 30 june 2015

12:42 - 12:45h at North America (level 0)

Themes: (T) Extreme events, natural variability and climate change, (ST) Hydrological extremes: floods and droughts, Poster pitches

Parallel session: Poster pitches: 5I. Extreme - Flood Drought

The periodic droughts has been reported in the Northeast region of Brazil since the beginning of the portuguese colonization, in sixteenth century. However, most researches on the drought phenomenon are usually concerned with just the quantification and qualification of the physical aspects of the phenomenon, such as the severity, extension and frequency, and often neglecting the social, economic, cultural and productive aspects of the region. Given the importance of studying the drought with the vulnerabilities of the population affected by the phenomenon, this study aimed to develop and apply indicators of drought vulnerability, with focus in environmental, social and agricultural aspects, in three municipalities in the semiarid region of the Paraíba State, located in northeastern Brazil: Picuí, Sousa and, Sumé. The methodology used was an adaptation of the indicators of drought vulnerability developed by Basic Project – funded by the European Commission – a capacity strengthening project that supports the institutional capacity of Brazil, India, China and South Africa to undertake analytical work to determine what kind of climate change actions best fit within their current and future national circumstances, interests and priorities. The drought vulnerability indexes to each municipality, based on vulnerability indicators, and their factors of Exposure, Sensitivity and, Adaptive Capacity, were obtained using census data, especially of 2010. From the results analysis it was concluded that Picuí had the biggest exposure, and, the worst performance in sensitivity, Regarding the indicator of adaptive capability, Sumé stood out in a negative way. In general terms, the municipality of Picuí presented the highest drought vulnerability index, followed by Sumé and, Sousa.