Post-disaster fertility: Hurricane Katrina and the changing racial composition of New Orleans
Large-scale climate events can have enduring effects on population size and composition. Natural disasters affect population fertility through multiple mechanisms, including displacement, demand for children, and reproductive care access. Fertility effects, in turn, influence the size and composition of new birth cohorts, extending the reach of climate events across generations. We study these processes in New Orleans during the decade spanning Hurricane Katrina. We combine census data, ACS data, and vital statistics data to describe fertility in New Orleans and seven comparison cities. Following Katrina, displacement contributed to a 30% decline in birth cohort size. Black fertility fell, and remained 4% below expected values through 2010. By contrast, white fertility increased by 5%. The largest share of births now occurs to white women. These fertility differences—beyond migration-driven population change—generate additional pressure on the renewal of New Orleans as a city in which the black population is substantially smaller in the disaster’s wake.
KeywordsFertility Disasters Hurricane Katrina New Orleans Race/Ethnicity
- Allison, P.D. (2009). Fixed effects regression models (Vol. 160). SAGE publicationsGoogle Scholar
- American Anthropological Association. (1998). Statement on “race”Google Scholar
- Barreca, A., Deschenes, O., & Guldi, M. (2015). Maybe next month? Temperature shocks, climate change, and dynamic adjustments in birth rates. National Bureau of Economic Research Working Paper No. 21681.Google Scholar
- Bourdieu, P. (1993). “identity and representation: elements for a critical reflection on the idea of region.” In language and symbolic power. Edited by John Thompson. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
- Brubaker, R. (2006). Ethnicity without groups. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
- Campanella, R. (2014). Two centuries of paradox: the geography of New Orleans’s African American population, from antebellum to postdiluvian times. In R. J. S. Romain Huret (Ed.), Hurricane Katrina in transatlantic perspective (pp. 8–37). Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press.Google Scholar
- Carballo, M., Hernandez, M., Schneider, K., & Welle, E. (2005). Impact of the tsunami on reproductive health. Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine, 98.Google Scholar
- US Census Bureau. (2013). Population estimates: intercensal estimates of the resident population by five-year age groups, sex, race, and Hispanic origin for counties: April 1, 2000 to July 1, 2010. Retrieved May 26, 2016, from https://www.census.gov/popest/data/intercensal/county/CO-EST00INT-alldata.html.
- US Census Bureau. 2016. Census longitudinal infrastructure project. https://census.gov/about/adrm/linkage/projects/clip.html Accessed 12/4/2016.
- Creel, L. (2002). Meeting the reproductive health needs of displaced people. Population Reference Bureau, MEASURE Communication Policy Brief. Retrieved from http://www.prb.org/pdf/Meetng ReproHlthDispl_Eng.pdf
- Cutter, S., Emrich, C., Mitchell, J., & Boruff, B. (2006). The long road home: race, class, and recovery from Hurricane Katrina.: Science and Policy, 48(2).Google Scholar
- Deitz, S., & Barber, K. (2015). Geographies of inequality, urban renewal, and race, gender, and class post-Katrina New Orleans. Race, Gender & Class, 134–159Google Scholar
- Diaz, L., & Fussell, E. (2015). Latinos in Metro New Orleans: progress, problems, and potential. The New Orleans Index at Ten. Report from The Data Center. Retrieved from http://www.DataCenterResearch.org
- Dynes, R. R., & Rodriguez, H. (2010). Finding and framing Katrina. the sociology of Katrina: perspectives on a modern catastrophe. Lanham, MD: Roman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc, 25–36.Google Scholar
- Frey, W. H., Singer, A., & Park, D. (2007). Resettling New Orleans: the first full picture from the Census. Brookings Institution Metropolitan Policy Program.Google Scholar
- Fussell, E. (2009). Hurricane chasers in New Orleans: Latino immigrants as a source of a rapid response labor force. Hispanic Journal of Behavioral SciencesGoogle Scholar
- Gabe, T., Falk, G., & Mccarty, M. (2005). Hurricane Katrina: docial-demographic characteristics of impacted areas. CRS Report for Congress, November, 4, 2005.Google Scholar
- Galloway, P. R. (1986). Long-term fluctuations in climate and population in the preindustrial era. Popul Dev Rev, 1–24.Google Scholar
- Geaghan, K.A. (2011). Forced to move: an analysis of Hurricane Katrina movers: 2009 American Housing Survey: New Orleans. SEHSD Working Paper Number 2011–17.Google Scholar
- Hamilton, B. E., Sutton, P. D., Mathews, T. J., Martin, J. A., & Ventura, S. J. (2009). The effect of Hurricane Katrina: births in the US Gulf Coast region, before and after the storm. National Vital Statistics Reports : From the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics, National Vital Statistics. System, 58(2), 1–28 32.Google Scholar
- Hamoudi, A., E. Frankenberg, C. Sumantri, & D. Thomas. (2014). Impact of the December 2004 Tsunami on Birth Outcomes in Aceh, IndonesiaGoogle Scholar
- Hill, K. (2005). War, humanitarian crises, population displacement, and fertility: a review of evidence. National Academies PressGoogle Scholar
- Hirsch, A. R., & Levert, A. L. (2009). The Katrina conspiracies: the problem of Trust in Rebuilding an American City. Journal of urban. History, 35(2), 207–219.Google Scholar
- Hosseini-Chavoshi, M. & M.J. Abbasi-Shavazi. (2013). Demographic consequences of the 2003 Bam earthquake. International Conference on the Demography of Disasters. Australian National UniversityGoogle Scholar
- International Federation of the Red Cross (IFRC). 2015. World Disaster. Report, 2014.Google Scholar
- Knabb, R.D., Rhome, J.R. & Brown, D.P. (2005). Tropical cyclone report: Hurricane Katrina 23–30 August 2005 Update. Report National Hurricane Center. http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/data/tcr/AL122005_Katrina.pdf. Accessed 4 Dec 2016.
- Lacy, M.G. & Haspel, K. C. (2011). The media’s framing of black looters, shooters, and brutes in Hurricane Katrina’s aftermath: In Critical Rhetorics of Race (pp. 21–46). NYU PressGoogle Scholar
- Lay, J. C. (2009). Race, retrospective voting, and disasters the re-election of C. Ray Nagin after Hurricane Katrina. Urban Stud, 44(5), 645–662.Google Scholar
- Logan, J. (2006). The impact of Katrina: race and class in storm-damaged neighborhoods. Unpublished manuscriptGoogle Scholar
- Logan, J. (2014) Diversity and disparities. American Communities Project, Spatial Structures in the Social Sciences. Retrieved November 27, 2016, from “https://s4.ad.brown.edu/projects/diversity/Data/Download3.htm”.
- Louisiana Department of. Health. (2017).2014 Birth Data. http://www.dhh.la.gov/index.cfm/page/2270 (accessed on 2/3/2017).
- Lovett, J. A. (2013). Tragedy or triumph in post-Katrina New Orleans? Reflections on possession, dispossession, demographic change and affordable housing. Fordham Urban Law Journal City Square, 22(2013), 22–42.Google Scholar
- McCarthy, K., Peterson, D., Sastry, N., & Pollard, M. (2006). The repopulation of New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. Report. Rand Gulf States Policy Institute.Google Scholar
- National Center for Health Statistics. (2012). Center for Disease Control and Prevention Natality detail Data Set, 2000-2010. Restricted-use data file and documentation. Accessed 14 Apr 2016.Google Scholar
- Percheski, C., & Kimbro, R. (2014). How did the great recession affect fertility? Focus, 30(2), 26–30.Google Scholar
- Plyer, A., & Ortiz, E. (2011). Who lives in New Orleans and the metro area now? Greater New Orleans Community Data Center, New Orleans Research Data Center. http://www.datacenterresearch.org/
- Preston, S. H., & Campbell, C. (1993). Differential fertility and the distribution of traits: the case of IQ. American Journal of Sociology, 997–1019.Google Scholar
- Ruggles, S., Genadek, K., Goeken, R., Grover, J., & Sobek, M. (2015). Integrated public use microdata series: version 6.0 [machine-readable database]. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota.Google Scholar
- Shrinath, N., Mack, V., & Plyer, A. (2014). Who lives in New Orleans and metro parishes now? Based on 2013 US Census Bureau data. Report from The Data Center. Retrieved from http://www.DataCenterResearch.org
- Urban Land Institute. (2005). A strategy for rebuilding New Orleans, Louisiana. Report.Google Scholar
- VanLandingham, M. (2010). A second disaster tests Vietnamese American resilience on the Gulf coast. Social Science Research Council’s Items and Issues, 6(3).Google Scholar
- Vos, F., Rodríguez, J., Below, R., & Guha-Sapir, D. (2010). Annual disaster statistical review 2009: the numbers and trends. In Annual disaster statistical review 2009: The numbers and trends. Centre for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters (CRED)Google Scholar
- Vu, L., & Vanlandingham, M. J. (2012). Physical and mental health consequences of Katrina on Vietnamese immigrants in New Orleans: a pre- and post-disaster assessment. Journal of immigrant and minority health/Center for Minority. Public Health, 14(3), 386–394.Google Scholar
- Weber, L., & Peek, L. (2012). Displaced: life in the Katrina diaspora. Austin: University of Texas Press.Google Scholar
- Wooldridge, J. M. (2010). Econometric analysis of cross section and panel data. MIT press.Google Scholar