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Unravelling Mongolia's Extreme Winter Disaster of 2010

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The 2010 extreme winter disaster (dzud) in Mongolia has lead to great livestock mortality (around 20 per cent of the national herd), the loss of pastoral livelihoods and rural displacement and affected 28 per cent of the country's population. Whilst environmental conditions were the immediate cause, contributory factors include a changing climate, current herding practices and weak governance. The severity of the event points out herding vulnerability, a lack of dzud preparedness and climate's disruptive impact on steppe pastoralism. This article examines the intertwined natural and human processes that shaped the dzud and the implications for pastoralism in Mongolia. Learning from the 2010 event is critical to reduce disaster risk and hazard impact on steppe livelihoods.
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Keywords: DISASTER; DZUD; LIVESTOCK MORTALITY; MONGOLIA; PASTORALISM

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: June 1, 2010

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  • Nomadic Peoples is an international journal published by the White Horse Press for the Commission on Nomadic Peoples, International Union of Anthropological and Ethnological Sciences. Its primary concerns are the current circumstances of all nomadic peoples around the world and their prospects. Its readership includes all those interested in nomadic peoples, scholars, researchers, planners and project administrators.
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