nep-agr New Economics Papers
on Agricultural Economics
Issue of 2010‒06‒18
28 papers chosen by
Angelo Zago
University of Verona

  1. The Survival of Small-scale Agricultural Producers in Asia, particularly Vietnam: General Issues Illustrated by Vietnam's Agricultural Sector, especially its Pig Production By Tisdell, Clem
  2. Agricultural Development in Traditional Asian Economies: Observations Prompted by a Livestock Study in Vietnam By Tisdell, Clem
  3. Evaluating the Economic Potential and Feasibility of Producing Bioenergy from Underutilized Crops in Sri Lanka By Prabodh Illukpitiya
  4. Natural Protection from International Competition in the Livestock Industry: Analysis, Examples and Vietnam's Pork Market as a Case By Tisdell, Clem; Lapar, Ma. Lucila; Staal, Steve; Que, Nguyen Ngoc
  5. Agriculture and the World Trade Organization: Does Membership Make a Difference By Grant, Jason H.; Boys, Kathryn A.
  6. Agricultural Trade Policy Options for Sri Lanka During Crisis Times By Weerahewa, Jeevika; Meilke, Karl
  7. The GHG Balance of Biofuels Taking into Account Land Use Change By Mareike Lange
  8. The Evidence Base for Environmental and Socioeconomic Impacts of “Sustainable” Certification By Blackman, Allen; Rivera, Jorge
  9. An Economic Study of Small Pigholders in Vietnam: Some Insights Gained and the Scope for Further Research By Tisdell, Clem
  10. Using a Discrete Choice Experiment to Elicit the Demand for a Nutritious Food: Willingness-to-Pay for Orange Maize in Rural Zambia By J. V. Meenakshi; Abhijit Banerji; Victor Manyong; Keith Tomlins; Priscilla Hamukwala; Nitya Mittal
  11. Climate Change, Total Factor Productivity, and the Tanzanian Economy: A Computable General Equilibrium Analysis By Bezabih, Mintewab; Chambwera, Muyeye; Stage, Jesper
  12. Household Adoption of Water-Efficient Equipment : The Role of Socio-economic Factors, Environmental Attitudes and Policy. By Katrin Millock; Céline Nauges
  13. Water Use Conflicts and their Impact on Rice Yield in Takeo Province, Cambodia By Thun Vathana; Suon Vanny; Khiev Daravy; Ros Bandeth
  14. Potential implications of a special safeguard mechanism in the WTO : the case of wheat By Hertel, Thomas W.; Martin, Will; Leister, Amanda M.
  15. Adoption and Impact of Improved Groundnut Varieties on Rural Poverty: Evidence from Rural Uganda By Kassie, Menale; Shiferaw, Bekele; Muricho, Geoffrey
  16. Ethiopia: Diversifying the Rural Economy. An Assessment of the Investment Climate for Small and Informal Enterprises By Loening, Josef; Mikael Imru, Laketch
  17. Land Use Planning and Land Allocation in the Upland of Northern Laos: Process Evaluation and Impacts By Khamphay Manivong; Phouthone Sophathilath
  18. Eating Local and Supporting the Farm Community By Kuo-Liang Chang; George Langelett
  19. Saving Fishers and Fish - An Assessment of Fishery Management Options for the Visayan Sea in the Philippines By Alice Joan G. Ferrer
  20. Cost-Effectiveness of Policy Options for Sustainable Wetland Conservation: A Case Study of Qixinghe Wetland, China By Wu Jian; Wang Xiaoxia; Niu Kunyu
  21. International Trade in Genetically Modified Products By Choi, E. Kwan
  22. Assessing the Impacts of Environmental Regulations on the Food Processing Industry in Vietnam By Le Ha Thanh
  23. Estimation of the Water Quality Amelioration Value of Wetlands: A Study of the Western Cape, South Africa By Turpie, Jane; Day, Elizabeth; Ross-Gillespie, Vere; Louw, Anton
  24. An Assessment of Forest Management Options for Preventing Forest Fire in Indonesia By Luthfi Fatah; Udiansyah
  25. On the Importance of Household Production in Collective Models: Evidence from U.S. Data By Donni, Olivier; Matteazzi, Eleonora
  26. Valuing Environmental Services Using Contingent Valuation Method By Duangmany Luangmany; Souphandone Voravong; Kaisorn Thanthathep; Daovinh Souphonphacdy; Malabou Baylatry
  27. Welfare Impacts of Alternative Biofuel and Energy Policies By Cui, Jingbo; Lapan, Harvey; Moschini, GianCarlo; Cooper, Joseph
  28. Competition Issues in the Seed Industry and the Role of Intellectual Property By Moschini, GianCarlo

  1. By: Tisdell, Clem
    Abstract: Economic growth in more developed countries has resulted in farms increasing their scale of production and becoming more specialized in their production. The sizes of farms have tended to increase, agricultural production has become more capital-intensive, and the percentage of the workforce employed in agriculture has shown a falling trend. This process has been brought about by the operation of market systems and has reduced the number of small-scale agricultural producers. Asia still has a huge number of small-scale agricultural producers. As Asian countries experience economic growth and as market systems become more established in Asia, the survival of Asiaâs small-scale agricultural producers is likely to be threatened. Since these producers are poor, this is of concern to several international aid agencies. On the other hand, some Asian governments (such as Vietnamâs) want to encourage larger scale agricultural production units. This article presents arguments for and against government strategies to promote large-scale agricultural units in emerging economies and presents an economic theory that models agricultural supply in emerging economics as being dualistic in nature. It provides information about the predominance of small-scale units in agricultural production in Vietnam, particularly in pig production, and assesses policies proposed for by Vietnamâs Government for increasing the size of units producing pigs.
    Keywords: Agricultural policies, Asia, economies of scale, farm sizes, household agriculture, industrial agriculture, pigs, Vietnam, Agricultural and Food Policy, International Development, Q1, Q11, Q12, Q15, Q18,
    Date: 2009–06
  2. By: Tisdell, Clem
    Abstract: China began its economic reforms in 1979 and Vietnam followed in 1986. Since then both countries have experienced rapid economic growth, falling poverty rates and significant rises in per capita income. At the same time, substantial restructuring of their economies has occurred, a feature of which has been a decline in the relative contribution of agriculture to total employment and output. These changes are outlined. Significant changes have also occurred in the agricultural sectors of China and Vietnam and these are reviewed. In both countries, the livestock sector has grown in relative importance. Households are the main contributors to agricultural production but their individual holdings of land are small and households keeping livestock mostly only hold a few head. Given the exit of farmers from agriculture, pressures are mounting for increasing the size of agricultural units. This exit can add to economic efficiency and growth. Policies to facilitate movements from farm to non-farm employment are discussed and analysed. Property rights and the marketability of agricultural land can facilitate such movements and contribute to economic efficiency. In recent times, China and Vietnam have extended property rights in agricultural land and have increased its marketability. These measures are outlined. With further economic development and transition, it is predicted that these rights and the marketability of agricultural land will be further extended
    Keywords: Agricultural development, Asia, China, economic transition, farm employment, land reforms, land rights, livestock, non-farm employment, structural change, Agricultural and Food Policy, International Development, Livestock Production/Industries, Q10, Q15, Q18, O2,
    Date: 2010–05
  3. By: Prabodh Illukpitiya (University of Hawaii)
    Abstract: Households living in peripheral villages of the natural forests are primarily dependent on agriculture and secondarily dependent on forest gatherings. High rates of forest dependency occur, in part, from the efforts of inefficient farmers securing subsistence. Due to excessive use, the productivity of the remaining forests is at a critical stage. Technical efficiency in agriculture in forest peripheries is one aspect in which agricultural capacity and rural incomes can be enhanced. The study's main objective was to assess the efficiency of farming in forest margins and to determine its effect on dependency on forest resources by rural households. The findings of the study showed that the mean technical efficiency in agricultural farming in forest peripheries ranges between 67 - 73 percent. Factors such as age, education, experience, extension, and the nutrition status of the household head are mainly responsible for determining the level of inefficiency. Further, study findings showed factors such as technical efficiency in agriculture, off-farm income, wealth and the diversification index had negative and significant effects on dependency of rural households on forest resource extraction. It is estimated that on average, an increase in mean technical efficiency in agriculture by 10 percent would increase agricultural revenue by 2,142 - 3,987 rupees/farm. Based on the threshold efficiency levels needed to arrest forest dependency, it is estimated that increasing agricultural income through increasing technical efficiency can be partly compensated for forest resource extraction. Compared to the measured efficiency levels, the efficiency gaps needs to be addressed by policy measures range from 2-14 percent for NTFP categories and 10-26 percent for the fuelwood category. Technical efficiency in agriculture can be minimized via policies to enhance farmer education, extension and nutrition status of households. Income diversification and off-farm employment, may be other viable options to minimize forest dependency. Based on the economic value of forest products extracted from each forest reserve, it is estimated that increasing technical efficiency in agriculture by 10 percent would reduce the opportunity cost of biodiversity conservation by 27, 46, 34 and 75 percents respectively in the forest under investigation. The study findings showed that intersectoral activities such as agriculture produce positive externalities in forest conservation. Additional revenue generated by improving technical efficiency of agriculture can be partly compensated for the income gained by extracting forest goods. Hence, improving technical efficiency in farming in forest peripheries should be an integral part of forest conservation policy in Sri Lanka.
    Keywords: bioenergy, Sri Lanka
    Date: 2009–10
  4. By: Tisdell, Clem; Lapar, Ma. Lucila; Staal, Steve; Que, Nguyen Ngoc
    Abstract: In some countries, local agricultural products (particularly livestock products) are shielded from international competition by ânaturalâ factors influencing the purchase of products. These factors include strong local tastes (or preferences) that favour the local product and the absence (or relative absence) of complementary retail outlets or home appliances suitable for storing and preparing potential imported substitutes. The desire for fresh meat rather than chilled or frozen meat, the absence or limited accessibility of supermarket outlets and limited refrigeration possibilities in homes can limit imports into developed countries of meat supplied by developed countries. From consumerâs perspectives these fresh or raw products are significantly different products from their frozen or processed alternatives, and so face different demand parameters. This product differentiation is nearly always ignored in trade models, which instead assume homogenous commodities. Where local fresh products make up over 90% of sales, such as pork in Vietnam, this unrecognized product differentiation can undermine model results, since raw or fresh products are generally untradeable. Examples of such limitations on trade are given for several developing countries, including some African nations. Religious consideration can also be a factor restricting international trade in livestock products and sometimes, government regulations on food imports reflect the tastes of local buyers, for example their demands for food purity and so on. Some simple economic analysis is provided of how local producers of livestock benefit from natural protection. Drawing on the results of recent research completed in Vietnam and other sources, factors that provide natural protection to Vietnamâs pork industry are identified, and particular attention is given to their implications for small-scale household pig producers compared to larger-scale commercial pig producers in Vietnam. It is noted that the current protection of Vietnamâs pig industry is not entirely based on preference for pork from local breeds of pigs but arises for other reasons. Some consideration is given to whether the natural protection of Vietnamâs pig industry will change in the future.
    Keywords: Agricultural policies, Asia, economies of scale, farm sizes, household agriculture, industrial agriculture, pigs, Vietnam, Agricultural and Food Policy, International Relations/Trade, Q1, Q11, Q12, Q15, Q18,
    Date: 2009–11
  5. By: Grant, Jason H.; Boys, Kathryn A.
    Keywords: WTO, membership, trade, Agricultural and Food Policy, International Development, International Relations/Trade, Political Economy,
    Date: 2010–05
  6. By: Weerahewa, Jeevika; Meilke, Karl
    Keywords: Sri Lanka, trade, policy, Agricultural and Food Policy, International Development, International Relations/Trade,
    Date: 2009–11
  7. By: Mareike Lange
    Abstract: The contribution of biofuels to the saving of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions has recently been questioned because of emissions resulting from land use change (LUC) for the bioenergy feedstock production. We investigate how an expanding biofuel feedstock production impacts on land use dynamics if LUC is included into the biofuel carbon accounting framework as scheduled by the European Commission. We first illustrate the change in carbon balances of different biofuels, using methodology and data from the IPCC Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories. It turns out that the conversion of natural land except for grassy savannahs impedes meeting the EU’s 35% minimum emissions reduction target for biofuels. We show that the current accounting method promotes biofuel feedstock production mainly on former cropland, thus increases the competition between food and fuel production on the currently available cropland area. We further discuss whether it is profitable to use degraded land for commercial bioenergy production as requested by the European Commission to avoid undesirable LUC and conclude that the current regulation sets little incentives to use such land. The exclusive consideration of LUC for bioenergy production minimizes direct LUC at the expense of increasing indirect LUC but a convincing approach to implement indirect LUC into the framework does not exist. To overcome this problem, we propose the inclusion of all agricultural activities into a regulatory framework for carbon accounting, thus eliminating the indirect LUC risk
    Keywords: land use change emissions, bioenergy, biofuels, European policy, land use dynamics, indirect land use change (ILUC)
    JEL: Q58 Q42 Q24 Q17
    Date: 2010–04
  8. By: Blackman, Allen (Resources for the Future); Rivera, Jorge
    Abstract: Initiatives certifying that farms and firms adhere to predefined environmental and social welfare production standards are increasingly popular. According to proponents, they create financial incentives for farms and firms to improve their environmental and socioeconomic performance. This paper reviews the evidence on whether sustainable certification of agricultural commodities and tourism operations actually has such benefits. It identifies empirical ex post farm-level studies of certification, classifies them on the basis of whether they use methods likely to generate credible results, summarizes their findings, and considers the implications for future research. We conclude that empirical evidence that sustainable certification has significant benefits is limited. We identify just 37 relevant studies, only 14 of which use methods likely to generate credible results. Of these 14 studies, only 6 find that certification has environmental or socioeconomic benefits. This evidence can be expanded by incorporating rigorous, independent evaluation into the design and implementation of projects promoting sustainable certification.
    Keywords: sustainable, certification, eco-label, literature review
    JEL: Q2 Q56
    Date: 2010–03–26
  9. By: Tisdell, Clem
    Abstract: Some relevant background to this research project is provided by outlining selected features of Vietnamâs pig industry. Then the main findings (in the view of the author) from this ACIAR-funded research are presented. These results include (1) natural protection given to Vietnamâs pig producers from imports as a result of the nature of the preferences of Vietnamese consumers: (2) the importance of household labour, especially that provided by females, in the husbandry of pigs held by households; (3) the existence, or otherwise, of scale economies as a function of the number of pigs held by households, (4) the import dependence for pig food of Vietnamâs pig industry and the way in which it varies with the number of pigs kept by households; (5) specialization in pig production, (6) regional differences in the economics of pig production; (7) economic discrimination in the supply of inputs to household producers of pigs and in their sale of pigs; (8) the size of pig-holdings and the use of professional services, such as veterinary services and extension services; and (9) findings about miscellaneous matters, such as the genetic composition of the pig stock. Scope for future research in relation to these aspects is also highlighted, and the need is raised for considering the economics of increasing quality standards and certifying the quality of pork. The economics of increasing the scale of pig producing units is given particular attention.
    Keywords: Vietnam, pigs, household agriculture, farm sizes, agricultural policies, Agricultural and Food Policy, International Development, Livestock Production/Industries, Q1,
    Date: 2010–05
  10. By: J. V. Meenakshi (Department of Economics, Delhi School of Economics, Delhi, India); Abhijit Banerji (Department of Economics, Delhi School of Economics, Delhi, India); Victor Manyong (International Institute of Tropical Agriculture); Keith Tomlins (Natural Resources Institute, University of Greenwich); Priscilla Hamukwala (University of Zambia); Nitya Mittal (Department of Economics, Delhi School of Economics, Delhi, India)
    Abstract: Using a discrete choice experiment, this paper estimates the willingness to pay for biofortified orange maize in rural Zambia. The study design has five treatment arms, which enable an analysis of the impact of nutrition information, comparing the use of simulated radio versus community leaders in transmitting the nutrition message, on willingness to pay, and to account for possible novelty effects in the magnitude of premiums or discounts. The estimation strategy also takes into account lexicographic preferences of a subset of our respondents. The results suggest that (a) orange maize is well liked and can compete with white maize in the absence of a nutrition campaign, (b) there is a premium for orange maize with nutrition information, and (c) the mode of nutritional-message dissemination does not have a large impact on consumer acceptance, and (d) novelty effects do not translate into higher willingness to pay for orange maize.
    Date: 2010–06
  11. By: Bezabih, Mintewab; Chambwera, Muyeye; Stage, Jesper
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the economic impacts of climate change-induced adjustments on the performance of the Tanzanian economy, using a countrywide CGE (computable general equilibrium) model. The general equilibrium framework enables comparison of the effects of climate change to the overall growth of the economy because responsiveness to shocks is likely to depend on the macroeconomic structure of the economy. Effect of overall climate change on agricultural productivity is projected to be relatively limited until approximately 2030 and become worse thereafter. Our simulation results indicate that, despite the projected reduction in agricultural productivity, the negative impacts can potentially be quite limited. This is because the time scales involved and the low starting point of the economy leave ample time for factor substitutability (i.e., replacing reduced land productivity with increased use of capital and labor) and increased overall productivity. This indicates that policies that give farmers opportunity to invest in autonomous climate adaptation, as well as policies that improve the overall performance of the economy, can be as important for reducing the impacts of climate change in the economy as direct government policies for climate adaptation. The study results can inform policymakers when choosing between direct climate-change adaptation policies or measures aimed at strengthening the fundamentals of the economy, as ways of insulating against external shocks.
    Keywords: climate change, agriculture, total factor productivity, Tanzania, CGE model
    JEL: Q18 C02
    Date: 2010–06–08
  12. By: Katrin Millock (Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne); Céline Nauges (Toulouse School of Economics (LERNA-INRA))
    Abstract: Using survey data of around 10,000 households from 10 OECD countries, we identify the driving factors of household adoption of water-efficient equipment by estimating Probit models of a household's probability to invest in such equipment. The results indicate that environmental attitudes and ownership status are strong predictors of adoption of water-efficient equipment. In terms of policy, we find that households that were both metered and charged for their water individually had a much higher probability to invest in water-efficient equipment compared to households that paid a flat fee.
    Keywords: Attitudes, metering, residential water use, technology adoption.
    JEL: D12 O33 Q25 Q58
    Date: 2010–06
  13. By: Thun Vathana; Suon Vanny; Khiev Daravy; Ros Bandeth
    Abstract: This paper aims to provide an overview of the irrigation sector in Cambodia. It attempts to document major problems and conflicts encountered in the irrigation sector in Takeo province and how these problems and conflicts are solved. It also analyzes the factors contributing to rice yield increase, particularly plot size, labor input, material input, and water adequacy. The study reveals that many irrigation schemes in Cambodia are not able to function well due to two main reasons: (1) poor technical design and (2) lack of proper maintenance. Poor technical design results from limited resources provided for irrigation construction and from having multi-purposes for the facility including flood control, transportation, and agricultural activities. Insufficient maintenance, a result of the country's long civil war in combination with lack of both external financial and technical support to the FWUC, has yielded poorly maintained irrigation facilities.
    Keywords: water, rice yield, Cambodia
    Date: 2010–03
  14. By: Hertel, Thomas W.; Martin, Will; Leister, Amanda M.
    Abstract: The Special Safeguard Mechanism was a key issue in the July 2008 failure to reach agreement in the World Trade Organization negotiations under the Doha Development Agenda. It includes both price and quantity-triggered measures. This paper uses a stochastic simulation model of the world wheat market to investigate the effects of policy makers implementing policies based on the Special Safeguard Mechanism rules. As expected, implementation of the quantity-triggered measures is found to reduce imports, raise domestic prices, and boost mean domestic production in the Special Safeguard Mechanism regions. However, rather than insulating countries that use it from price volatility, it would actually increase domestic price volatility in developing countries, largely by restricting imports when domestic output is low and prices high. This paper estimates that implementation of the quantity-triggered measures would shrink average wheat imports by nearly 50 percent in some regions, with world wheat trade falling by 4.7 percent. The price measures discriminate against low price exporters -- many of whom are developing countries -- and tend to increase producer price instability.
    Keywords: Markets and Market Access,Climate Change Economics,Emerging Markets,Access to Markets,Trade Policy
    Date: 2010–06–01
  15. By: Kassie, Menale; Shiferaw, Bekele; Muricho, Geoffrey
    Abstract: This paper evaluates the ex-post impact of adopting improved groundnut varieties on crop income and rural poverty in rural Uganda. The study utilizes cross-sectional farm household data collected in 2006 in seven districts of Uganda. We estimated the average adoption premium using propensity score matching (PSM), poverty dominance analysis tests, and a linear regression model to check robustness of results. Poverty dominance analysis tests and linear regression estimates are based on matched observations of adopters and non-adopters obtained from the PSM. This helped us estimate the true welfare effect of technology adoption by controlling for the role of selection problem on production and adoption decisions. Furthermore, we checked covariate balancing with a standardized bias measure and sensitivity of the estimated adoption effect to unobserved selection bias, using the Rosenbaum bounds procedure. The paper computes income-based poverty measures and investigates their sensitivity to the use of different poverty lines. We found that adoption of improved groundnut technologies has a significant positive impact on crop income and poverty reduction. These results are not sensitive to unobserved selection bias; therefore, we can be confident that the estimated adoption effect indicates a pure effect of improved groundnut technology adoption.
    Keywords: groundnut technology adoption, crop income, poverty alleviation, propensity score matching, switching regression, stochastic dominance, Rosenbaum bounds, Uganda
    JEL: C01 C21 I32 O12 Q16
    Date: 2010–05–25
  16. By: Loening, Josef; Mikael Imru, Laketch
    Abstract: The Rural Investment Climate Assessment (ICA) is one of the first studies of small and informal firms in rural and semi-urban areas in Ethiopia. Little was known about the nature and size distribution of small, rural firms, the constraints they face when trying to expand or even to survive, the significance of their impact on the broader rural economy, and the policies, reforms and public investments that could spur investment by rural non-farm enterprises. One quarter of all households in rural Ethiopia own and operate a small enterprise. For these households, the income they earn from the business contributes about 40 percent of their total household income, indicating that the nonfarm sector in rural areas is significantly larger than was previously thought. The Rural ICA finds that participation on small and informal enterprise in rural areas contributes to achieving growth and food security as well as in reducing poverty and inequality. Among the recommendations of the Rural ICA is a call for the development of rural market towns. Small, fragmented markets are the major constraint to business performance and growth. In small market towns demand is higher, transaction costs are lower, competition is stronger, and there are more incentives to invest. Although, overall, nonfarm enterprise productivity and profits are low, enterprises in rural towns are as productive as informal small enterprises in urban areas - and about 50 percent more productive than enterprises in remote rural areas. As the Ethiopian economy develops, with higher productivity and better performance in agriculture, the nonfarm sector will also grow and become increasingly important as an alternative employer of labor and source of livelihood in rural areas. This suggests the policy priority should not be 'either agriculture or the nonfarm sector' but a balanced approach.
    Keywords: Ethiopia, enterprise performance, informal sector, rural-urban linkages
    JEL: L25 O55 O18
    Date: 2009–10–06
  17. By: Khamphay Manivong; Phouthone Sophathilath
    Abstract: Shifting cultivation, a farming practice on which majority of the upland population in the Lao People Democratic Republic (Lao PDR) has been heavily dependent upon, was identified as the main cause of rapid deforestation in the country. To address the problem, a Land Use Planning and Land Allocation (LUP/LA) program has been implemented since the start of the 1990s. This study reviewed the LUP/LA policy and assessed the implementation of the program as well as its livelihood and environmental impacts. Research undertaken in two districts - at Xieng Ngeun district of Luangphabang province and at Namo district of Oudomxay province - showed the need for program improvement. Recommendations are provided to improve program implementation.
    Keywords: land use, Lao PDR
    Date: 2009–10
  18. By: Kuo-Liang Chang (Deparment of Economics, South Dakota State University); George Langelett (Deparment of Economics, South Dakota State University)
    Date: 2010–05
  19. By: Alice Joan G. Ferrer (Division of Social Science, University of The Philippines Visayas)
    Abstract: The Visayan Sea is one of the most important and threatened marine areas in the Philippines. It is a source of income and food for thousands of people and an ecological recource of world importance. However, over exploitation means that fishing in the area is no longer sustainable and that fishing communities are losing their fishing communities are losing their livelihoods. For this reason, there is an urgent need to do something to stop any further decline in the sea’s environmental quality. This study, assesses a number of potential management options that could protect biodiversity in the Visayan Sea and help its fishing communities to earn a better living. The study finds that the best way forward would be to use a combination of options, including putting in place a marine protected area and implementing various fishing bans. The study also recommends that a single management body should be set up to oversee the implementation of this multipronged approach.
    Keywords: Fishery management, Philippines
    Date: 2009–12
  20. By: Wu Jian (School of Environment and Natural Resources, Renmin University of China); Wang Xiaoxia (School of Environment and Natural Resources, Renmin University of China); Niu Kunyu (School of Environment and Natural Resources, Renmin University of China)
    Abstract: This study assesses a number of potential policy options that could help protect the Qixinghe Wetlands which lie in the country's Sanjiang Plain. The region's wetlands are the most important breeding ground and migration route for waterfowls in Northeastern Asia, and provide a habitat for numerous species of wildlife. They face many challenges, one of the most significant being the disruption of the water supplies that feed them. Agriculture is the main cause of this problem, accounting for more than 75% of the total water use in the area. As the flow of water entering the wetlands is diverted, its ecosystem is damaged. This problem affects many wetland areas in China. The study is the work of a team of researchers from Renmin University of China, led by Wu Jian. It assesses the best way to reduce the conflict between wetland water needs and off-site water use. Its overall aim is to help policy makers decide how best to balance economic development with wetland conservation. The study recommends that the local government should reconstruct the irrigation system in the area surrounding the Qixinghe Wetlands as soon as possible. At the same time, training on water saving practices should be promoted amongst farmers. The study also suggests how these two key policies could be supported by improvements in conservation funding and management.
    Keywords: wetland, China
    Date: 2010–02
  21. By: Choi, E. Kwan
    Keywords: Gentically modified products; import ban; landowners
    JEL: F13
    Date: 2010–06–05
  22. By: Le Ha Thanh (Faculty of Environmental, Natural Resources and Urban Economics & Management, Hanoi National Economics University)
    Abstract: This study assesses the effectiveness of Decree 67, a key piece of the country's 'polluter-pays' environmental legislation. Industrial waste-water pollution is one of the most significant environmental problems affecting Vietnam. Although the country has implemented a range of anti-pollution legislation, the problem has not been resolved and companies continue to pollute on a large scale. This makes it important to understand why current environmental legislation is not working and what must be done to improve the situation. The study looks at the impact of Decree 67 on food processing companies in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. The study finds that, although the legislation has been successful in raising environmental awareness among businesses, it has been less successful at stopping pollution. Overall, Decree 67 has had a minimal impact and is poorly implemented and enforced. The study shows that many company owners and managers have an adequate knowledge of environmental protection. It is also clear that companies do not consider environmental protection a top priority. Overall, environmental costs are not being fully internalized by businesses. The study makes a number of suggestions for how Decree 67 can be made more effective. Recommendations include reducing the scope of the legislation to make it easier to implement and a phased increased in the charges that are levied on polluting.
    Keywords: waste pollution, Vietnam
    Date: 2010–03
  23. By: Turpie, Jane; Day, Elizabeth; Ross-Gillespie, Vere; Louw, Anton
    Abstract: Wetlands are commonly understood to have the capacity to reduce the loads of excess nutrients, pathogens, sediments, and other contaminants generated by various activities in their catchment areas. However, quantifying these “services” is difficult and most research in this field has concentrated on artificial treatment wetlands. Understanding the value of their water treatment characteristics, as well as the other services they provide, is increasingly recognized as essential to achieving a balance between conservation and activities that degrade or replace wetlands. The aim of this study is to estimate the water treatment capacity of wetlands on a landscape scale in the South Western Cape of South Africa and estimate the economic value of the service performed. We collected samples at the outflow points of 100 subcatchment areas and measured the loads of nitrogen, dissolved phosphorus, and suspended solids, which were analyzed with respect to detailed spatial data on land cover and wetlands area. Wetlands play a significant role in the reduction of nitrates, nitrites, and ammonium, but not dissolved phosphorus or suspended solids. Estimated removal rates range from 307 to 9,505 kg N per ha-1 year-1, with an average of 1,594 ± 1,375 kg N per ha-1 year-1. Data from a number of water treatment works suggest that the cost of removal of ammonium nitrogen is in the order of ZAR 26 per kilogram. Applied to the wetlands in the study area—assuming wetlands do play a role in total phosphorus removal—this suggests that the average value of the water treatment service provided by wetlands in the study area is about ZAR 14,350 ± 12,385 ha-1 year-1. These values are high enough to compete with the alternative land uses that threaten their existence. The results suggest that wetlands should be given considerably more attention in land-use planning and regulation.
    Keywords: ecosystem services, wetlands, economic valuation, water treatment
    JEL: Q57
    Date: 2010–06–08
  24. By: Luthfi Fatah (Faculty of Agriculture Lambung Mangkurat University); Udiansyah (Faculty of Agriculture Lambung Mangkurat University)
    Abstract: This study highlights the root causes of forest fires in Indonesia and assesses a range of potential new policy options to improve the situation. Uncontrolled forest fires are one of the key causes of habitat destruction in Indonesia. The haze they produce causes significant pollution problems for people in the country and in surrounding nations. Partly as a result of these fires, Indonesia is currently losing nearly two million hectares of forest every year. Deforestation on this scale, at this speed, is unprecedented and deeply worrying. Indonesia's forests are home to a large share of the world's biodiversity and also provide a livelihood for millions of people. The study finds that the weak enforcement of forest conservation rules and regulations is a key problem and that this is caused by a wide range of resource and institutional failures. It highlights three key policy improvements that would address the forest fire problem in a cost effective way. The improvements involve strengthening policy implementation in the field, putting in place an effective reward and punishment system and the establishment of an institution to monitor and record stakeholder compliance and violation. The study recommends that all three of these policy options are of a high priority. It also highlights a number of steps that must be taken to make sure that they are implemented effectively. These include ensuring that parliament supports and finances the appropriate policies, and empowering local communities to help weed out corruption and bribery.
    Keywords: forest fire, Indonesia
    Date: 2010–04
  25. By: Donni, Olivier (University of Cergy-Pontoise); Matteazzi, Eleonora (University of Verona)
    Abstract: The present paper develops a theoretical model of labor supply with domestic production. It is shown that the structural components of the model can be identified without a distribution factor, thereby generalizing the initial results of Apps and Rees (1997) and Chiappori (1997). The theoretical model is then estimated using the ATUS data. The empirical results are compared to those obtained from a similar model without domestic production.
    Keywords: collective model, market labor supply, domestic labor supply, household production, identification, ATUS
    JEL: D13 J21 J22
    Date: 2010–05
  26. By: Duangmany Luangmany (Environmental Training Center and the Environment Research Institute); Souphandone Voravong (Environmental Training Center and the Environment Research Institute); Kaisorn Thanthathep (Environmental Training Center and the Environment Research Institute); Daovinh Souphonphacdy (Environmental Training Center and the Environment Research Institute); Malabou Baylatry (Environmental Training Center and the Environment Research Institute)
    Abstract: This paper presents the results of two studies in Lao PDR that assessed people's willingness to pay (WTP) using the Contingent Valuation Methodology (CVM). The first study investigated the WTP of residents for the sustainable development and maintenance of urban parks in the city using Saysetha Park as the case study. In this study residents expressed that urban parks are very important to them as they are areas for relaxation and areas to conserve urban biodiversity. The WTP survey revealed that the residents' mean WTP is 10,741kip/month/household. With this amount, it was estimated that a monthly water bill surcharge of 3,000/kip/month/household may be recommended to maintain urban parks. The second study assessed the WTP for biodiversity conservation and sustainability in the Houay Nhang Protected Area. Using CVM, the WTP responses showed that the monthly contribution that would be acceptable to the people is 5,000 kip. The logit regression shows that this WTP value is influenced by bid prices, gender, and educational levels. The respondents recognized the importance of the protected area for environmental and biodiversity protection.
    Keywords: contingent valuation, Lao PDR
    Date: 2009–10
  27. By: Cui, Jingbo; Lapan, Harvey; Moschini, GianCarlo; Cooper, Joseph
    Abstract: We employ an open economy general equilibrium model to investigate the effects of government energy policy, with an emphasis on corn-based ethanol, on the U.S. economy. The model specification incorporates world and domestic markets, assumes pollution costs from fuel consumption, and allows endogenous determination of equilibrium quantities and prices for oil, corn and ethanol. The model is calibrated to represent a recent benchmark data set for 2009 and is used to simulate the positive and normative effects of alternative policies. We find that a second best policy of a fuel tax and ethanol subsidy approximates fairly closely the welfare gains associated with the first-best policy of an optimal carbon tax and tariffs on traded goods. The largest economic gains to the U.S. economy from these energy policies arise from the impact of the policies on U.S. terms of trade, particularly in the oil market. We also find that, conditional on the current fuel tax, an optimal ethanol mandate is superior to an optimal ethanol subsidy. In the benchmark case, the optimal ethanol mandate is about 18 billion gallons.
    Keywords: Biofuel policies; carbon tax; ethanol subsidy; gasoline tax; Greenhouse gas emissions; Mandates; renewable fuel standard; Second best; welfare.
    JEL: F1 H2 Q2
    Date: 2010–06–09
  28. By: Moschini, GianCarlo
    Abstract: Research and Development (R&D) and innovation are crucial features of the seed industry. To support large R&D investments by the private sector, strong intellectual property rights, such as patents, are necessary. The exclusivity granted by patents naturally creates market power positions and raises difficult and unresolved competition issues in an antitrust context. 
    JEL: L1 L4 O3 Q1
    Date: 2010–06–08

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