Environmental Security and Labor Migration in Nepal

Publication Abstract

Shrestha, Sundar S., and Humnath Bhandari. 2007. "Environmental Security and Labor Migration in Nepal." Population and Environment 29(1):25-38.

Do changes in environmental security that result from declining access to forest resources shape labor migration in a context where household production and consumption are intimately dependent on natural resources? Using 1996 household data from the Chitwan Valley of Nepal, we examined if a decrease in access to firewood increased the likelihood of migration of individuals for work. The results of multinomial logistic regression showed that, environmental insecurity was a significant predictor for migration regardless of destination, domestic or international. Labor requirements for household maintenance also played an important role in the decision to migrate. Management of forest resources and poverty alleviation by providing firewood substitutes and economic opportunities at the local level is likely to change the labor migration flow, which could be an important issue for future research.

DOI: 10.1007/s11111-007-0059-0