Impact of climate variability and urbanization on water storage practices and vector-borne disease incidence: Developing an understanding for risk prediction and response using Delhi, India as context

Lead PI: Dr. Shama Perveen

Unit Affiliation: Cross-Cutting Initiative (CCI)

July 2011 - December 2012
Asia ; India
Project Type: Research

DESCRIPTION: As India’s population increases and urbanization expands, urban water supplies suffer from an increasing supply-demand gap. In addition, the highly variable seasonal rainfall year to year produces even greater uncertainty in water supply. Planning and managing the water storage allow many benefits for India’s population including water security, agricultural productivity, adaptive capacity, and reduce breeding sites for mosquitoes that transmit diseases.

OUTCOMES: The project sought to understand how select patterns of urbanization and climate variation modify the impact of human water storage practices on dengue and malaria in Delhi, India. The ultimate goal was to enable countrywide monitoring and prediction of vector-borne disease risk in which local infrastructure, human activities and behavior, and disease incidence are robustly linked with local weather and large-scale climate variability. The findings will be used to explore and propose adaptation strategies that simultaneously provide increased water security and reduced vulnerability to disease in the built environment.


The Earth Institute




Jeffrey Shaman, Tara Troy, Gilma Mantilla, Indrani Pal, P.K. Joshi, Ramesh Dhiman, Upmanu Lall, Harish Padmanabha, Eliza Little, Brian Malloux, Paul Block, Peter Cookson, Kapil Narula


Columbia Water Center (CWC), International Research Institute for Climate and Society (IRI), Mailman School of Public Health, Barnard College, Columbia University Teachers College


The Energy and Research University (Delhi, India), National Institute of Malaria Research (NIMR), Dept of Epidemiology of Microbial Diseases, Yale University


climate variability vector-borne disease incidence urbanization water water security water supply


Modeling and Adapting to Future Climate