Evaluating the Impact and Recovery of Hurricane Matthew on the Agricultural Sector of the Sud and Grand’Anse Department, Haiti.

  • Ellie-Jo Warburton

Student thesis: Master's ThesisMaster of Science by Research


Hurricanes present a significant threat to food insecurity in geographically vulnerable nations, such as Haiti, that are heavily reliant on agriculture. Despite this, there is a lack of data collected within Haiti, specifically in the Sud and Grand’Anse department, to implement sound disaster risk management plans against hurricanes. This prevents building resilience against one of the largest threats to food insecurity. Consequently, this research presents a desk-based methodology employing the common satellite derived Vegetation Index, Normalised Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) to evaluate the immediate impact and long-term recovery of agricultural vegetation following Hurricane Matthew. Analysis of NDVI before and after hurricane Matthew identified the communes and agricultural land covers that sustained the most damage in the immediate aftermath of the hurricane, alongside their long-term recovery. The findings conclude that Hurricane Matthew inflicted widescale damage, with agricultural land covers, Agroforestry and Dense Agriculture, and the communes of Torbeck and Camp-Perrin sustaining the most severe damage. Consequently, more severe damage is predominantly linked to species taller in height with a wider surface area andcoastal or inland flooding of river valleys associated with a storm surge or heavy precipitation. In the long-term, findings suggest that agricultural vegetation made a full recovery by 6 months posthurricane. The findings of this research highlights areas of vulnerability to hurricanes in Haiti. This is useful to governments and locals to inform changes to agricultural practices and policy to build resilience and reduce food insecurity. If tested, this methodology can be utilised in any region of the world, investigating the impact of not only hurricanes but other climatic-related hazards such as flooding and droughts.
Date of Award2023
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Coventry University
SupervisorCharley Hill-Butler (Supervisor), Jade Catterson (Supervisor), Matthew Blackett (Supervisor) & Georges Félix (Supervisor)


  • Hurricane Matthew
  • Haiti
  • Agricultural Vegetation
  • NDVI
  • Impact and Recovery
  • time-series analysis
  • Land covers

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