Papua New Guinea - Earthquake | February 2018




Resilience profile


Most of the earthquake-affected areas experienced substantially above-normal temperatures between August and October 2017, and reported incidence of drought which impacted crop production (mainly kaukau and sago in this part of the country).

The earthquake affected areas are at times prone to erratic rain conditions - either flooding or drought, which affects crop production. Considering the substantial dependency of much of the population on garden-crop agriculture, resilience to cope with adverse shocks, be it climate-related or otherwise, is limited.

Livelihood profile


Garden crop production and livestock keeping are the dominant income generating activities within the earthquake-affected area. mVAM historical livelihood analysis shows that households dependent on livestock-keeping and garden crops as their main source of income are more vulnerable to being severely food insecure than their peers.

WASH, Protection and Gender

Water & Child Health:

According to the most recent mVAM survey, supply of drinking water is relatively good, and historical data shows a substantial improvement in community water over the last two years.

Similarly, the rate of reported child illness amongst households with children continued to show a gradual decline.

Food security

Food security:

Approximately 30 percent of the population of the seven extremely affected LLGs (Priority 1) are estimated to be severely food insecure according to the Food Insecurity Experience Scale (FIES), an official indicator used to track progress towards the SDG target of zero hunger. Two are deemed as "food insecurity hotspots" (those with 40% or higher prevalence of households considered to be severely food insecure): Komo Rural and South Koroba Rural (mVAM Report 4, February 2018).

Households from North Koroba Rural LLG surveyed in the most recent mVAM survey reported facing extreme shortage of food supply.

Within the 10 severely affected (Priority 2) LLGs, approximately 39 percent of the population is estimated to be severely food insecure.


Supply of staple commodities:

According to the latest mVAM data, most of the earthquake-affected areas faced some shortage of supply of staple crops. North Koroba Rural LLG reportedly faced extreme shortage.

Prices of staple commodities:

Within the Priority 1 LLGs, the average price of kaukau was about 2.8 KPG/unit, and the price of sago was reported at 3 KPG/unit in Lake Kutubu Rural LLG. In North Koroba Rural LLG, where an extreme shortage of kaukau supply was reported, the average price was nearly double the average at 5 KPG/unit.

Meanwhile the average price of rice was about 5.70 KPG/kilo, which is in line with the national median reported price of rice, which has remained stable at around 5 KPG per kilo for nearly the past two years.