Social Vulnerability and Climate Risk Assessment for Agricultural Communities in The United States

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Tugkan Tanir, Enes Yildirim, Celso M. Ferreira, Ibrahim Demir


Floods and droughts significantly affect agricultural activities and pose a threat to food security by subsequently reducing agricultural production. The impact of flood events is distributed disproportionately among agricultural communities based on their socio-economic fabric. Understanding climate-related hazards is critical for planning mitigation measures to secure vulnerable communities. This research presents a comprehensive risk evaluation methodology for assessing the combined risk of drought and flood hazards among agricultural communities in the United States. By integrating social vulnerability levels with drought and flood exposure data, the study identifies the most vulnerable agricultural communities individually, aiming to provide significant insights into the vulnerability of the agricultural community in the continental U.S. The research addresses a critical scientific gap through a nationwide social vulnerability assessment, evaluating expected annual losses for flood and drought hazards, and combining social vulnerability with expected annual losses. The analyses were conducted by adapting datasets and methodologies that are developed by federal institutions such as FEMA, USACE, and USDA. The study identified the 30 most socially vulnerable counties and assessed their exposure to drought and flooding, finding that Mendocino, Sonoma, Humboldt, El Dorado, Fresno, and Kern counties in California had the highest drought exposure and expected annual losses, with Humboldt (CA) and Montgomery (TX) having the highest combined risk.



Agriculture, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Environmental Indicators and Impact Assessment, Geographic Information Sciences, Physical and Environmental Geography, Risk Analysis, Spatial Science


flood, drought, Social Vulnerability, Risk Quantification, Agricultural Communities, , drought, Agricultural Communities, Social Vulnerability, Risk Quantification


Published: 2023-08-18 14:01

Last Updated: 2023-08-18 21:01


CC BY Attribution 4.0 International

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The is available upon request