Seasonal vulnerability and risk calendar in Nepal


What is the information and evidence on the seasonal vulnerability and risk calendar in Nepal at a national and sub-national level?


Nepal faces many seasonal disasters, including floods, landslides, fires, droughts and diseases. Findings of this rapid review indicates that:

  • Most people are killed and injured during July–September which is in the monsoon period.
  • Preparedness activities could take place in anticipation of seasonal disasters.
  • The Tarai is vulnerable to floods, lightening, epidemics and drought in the monsoon period; and fires, windstorms, and drought in the dry season.
  • The Hills are vulnerable to floods, landslides, drought, epidemics, lightening, and hailstorms in the monsoon period; and fires, windstorms, and drought in the dry season.
  • The Mountains are vulnerable to landslides, glacial lake outburst floods, drought, lightening, and epidemics in the lower parts of the mountain region in the monsoon period; windstorms in the dry season; and avalanches in the winter period.
  • The monsoon season (June-September) often experiences landslides, flooding, thunderstorms, disease (cholera, gastroenteritis, diarrhoea, encephalitis, meningitis, typhoid, jaundice, malaria, Japanese encephalitis) and drought (when the monsoon rains fail).
  • The dry season (March-June) often experiences household and wildfires, drought, heatwaves, and windstorms.
  • The winter season (November-February) often experiences avalanches, avian influenza, and crop damage.
  • Nepal is very vulnerable to climate change which is expected to lead to more extreme weather and changing seasons.
  • Summer cropping season (June-September) involves rice, maize and millet, while the winter cropping season (October-May) involves wheat, barley and potatoes.
  • Seasonal food shortages are quite common in many parts of Nepal. July-August and January-March are traditionally agricultural lean seasons, leading to increased risks of food insecurity.
  • Water-borne diseases are common between June-August. Water sources may be seasonal.
  • Seasonal migration is related to the agricultural cycle, with young men leaving to find work, leaving those behind more vulnerable to disasters.

Other seasonal events which may increase vulnerability include:

  • The main festival season, which is in October/November. Festivals can see mass gatherings of people.
  • Autumn and spring, which are the main tourist trekking and hiking seasons in Nepal.


Suggested citation

Rohwerder, B. (2016). Seasonal vulnerability and risk calendar in Nepal (GSDRC Helpdesk Research Report 1358). Birmingham, UK: GSDRC, University of Birmingham.