Climatic models ran during the NAPA assessment for the period 2008-2012 have shown that Cape Verde´s natural vulnerabilities, along with their social and economic implications, are very likely to be exacerbated by climate-related disruptions in the next decades. These include more frequent extreme events like storms, floods and droughts, as well as shorter rainy seasons, with immediate impacts on livelihoods, infrastructure, sanitary conditions, recharge of reservoirs, and crop productivity.

This section provides a summary of key natural hazards and their associated socioeconomic impacts in a given country. And it allows quick evaluation of most vulnerable areas through the spatial comparison of natural hazard data with development data, thereby identifying exposed livelihoods and natural systems.

Natural Hazard Statistics

The charts provide overview of the most frequent natural disaster in a given country and understand the impacts of those disasters on human populations.


Climate change is now recognized to have a significant impact on disaster management efforts and pose a significant threat to the efforts to meet the growing needs of the most vulnerable populations. The demands of disaster risk management are such that concise, clear, and reliable information is crucial. The information presented here offers insight into the frequency, impact and occurrence of natural hazards.

Natural Hazard / Development Nexus

Understanding natural hazard occurrence as well as historical climate conditions, in relation to development contexts, is critical to understanding a country’s historical vulnerability. This tool allows the visualization of different natural hazards or historical climate conditions with socio-economic and development datasets. Select the Development Context and either a Natural Hazard or Climate Condition and overlay horizontally by sliding the toggle left or right to gain a broader sense of historically vulnerable areas.



Data presented under Historical Climate Conditions are reanalysis products derived from ERA5-Land data. ERA5-Land is a global land-surface dataset at 9 km resolution, consistent with atmospheric data from the ERA5 reanalysis from 1950 onward. Climate reanalyses combine past observations with models to generate consistent time series of multiple climate variables. They provide a comprehensive description of the observed climate as it has evolved during recent decades, on 3D grids at sub-daily intervals. 

This data has been collected, aggregated and processed by the Climate Resilience Cluster of the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Earth Observation for Sustainable Development (EO4SD) initiative.

Key Vulnerabilities
  • For Cape Verde, an island country, reduction of coastlines due to a possible rise in sea level could likely be a huge constraint to development and will dramatically affect coastal areas and the population (where 80% of the population lives), tourism, loss of habitat, biodiversity and fisheries. In Cape Verde, the main effects of sea level rise are increased coastal erosion, partial flooding depending on the tides, increased salinity in wells and boreholes located in the lowlands of the rivers, displacement of people to inner parts of the islands, abandonment of some tourist facilities located in areas affected by tides.
  • The islands generally have quite uneven topography of volcanic origin, with steep, deep and ramified valleys as in the eastern islands (Sal, Boavista and Maio). The highest point in Cape Verde is located on the Fogo Island having an active volcano in the country whose last eruption dates back to 1995. The recent volcano experienced was in 2014 which destroyed houses and infrastructure.
  • Nearly 70% of the population lives in rural areas and droughts have a negative impact on food security in Cape Verde. With an average 225 mm/year rainfall, approximately 20% of the water from rainfall is lost through surface runoff, 13% infiltrates, recharging aquifers, and 67% evaporates. Droughts will have an immediate and negative impact because of lower household yields in agriculture. Droughts add to decreased water availability to promote socio-economic development and add to desertification.