In the HKH region, floodwater and sand deposition decreases soil productivity and places more pressure on the remaining fertile land (Dankelman et al. 2008, Mitchell 2007, Regmi and Adikhari, 2007). Studies estimate that crop yields in Central and South Asia could fall by up to 30% by the mid-21st century, increasing the risk of hunger in many countries (IPCC, 2007). Sand, dead animals and human waste flowing in flooded rivers also drastically decrease access to safe drinking water. Hence, women have to spend more time to access, carry and purify water (Mitchell, 2007). When women’s access to water
is limited, the whole household is affected because it depends on women to provide water for drinking, cooking, cleaning (Raworth, 2008), livestock rearing and subsistence agriculture.
In some places in South Asia, women are at greater risk than men of death from climate change related disasters because of pre-existing culturally constructed gender norms (Nelson et al., 2002) and power relations. For instance, in the 1991 Bangladesh cyclone, about 59% of the tens of thousands of deaths were women (Begum, 1993). Among the 20 to 44 age