Earth Systems and Environment

, Volume 2, Issue 3, pp 633–642 | Cite as

Exposure, Impacts, and Responses to Heat Stress: A Comparison Between Rural and Peri-urban Poor Population

  • Muhammad Awais UmarEmail author
  • Fahad Saeed
  • Kashif Majeed Salik
  • Abid Qaiyum Suleri
Original Article


This study is an attempt to understand the differences in exposure, impacts, and responses to heat stress between peri-urban and rural population. Furthermore, it explores how crucial a role heat stress plays in impacting migration decisions. Based on the analysis of an ensemble of regional climate models, it is found that the studied region is projected to undergo an increase in the frequency of heat waves under RCP 8.5 scenario. Afterwards, a randomly selected household survey was carried out at rural as well as peri-urban areas of Faisalabad. At both areas, the available economic opportunities were analyzed to understand how economic well-being and type of occupation are associated with thermal discomfort. It was found that people involved in outdoor activities are highly vulnerable to heat stress. Poverty is one of the prime barriers to adapt to heat stress. People’s livelihoods, in terms of labor productivity and decline in agriculture production, are reported to be affected by the heat stress. This study found that peri-urban respondents came from the rural areas of the district and other cities across the providence to improve their level of income and reduce their vulnerabilities but due to the low level of education and skills, they have only been able to improve their livelihoods to a limited extent. As a result, there is very little improvement in their standard of living as well as their thermal discomfort/exposure to heat stress.


Migration Climate change Heat stress Poverty 



This study is based on the Pathways to Resilience in Semi-Arid Economies (PRISE) project, funded by Canada’s International Development Research Centre (IDRC) and the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) through the Collaborative Adaptation Research Initiative in Africa and Asia (CARIAA).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest Statement

On behalf of all authors, the corresponding author states that there is no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

41748_2018_70_MOESM1_ESM.jpg (53 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (JPEG 52 kb) S 1: Indoor temperature distribution


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Muhammad Awais Umar
    • 1
    Email author
  • Fahad Saeed
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Kashif Majeed Salik
    • 1
  • Abid Qaiyum Suleri
    • 1
  1. 1.Sustainable Development Policy InstituteIslamabadPakistan
  2. 2.Center for Excellence in Climate Change ResearchKing Abdul-Aziz UniversityJeddahSaudi Arabia
  3. 3.Climate AnalyticsBerlinGermany

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