nep-env New Economics Papers
on Environmental Economics
Issue of 2010‒12‒04
34 papers chosen by
Francisco S.Ramos
Federal University of Pernambuco

  1. "No-Till" Farming Is a Growing Practice By Horowitz, John; Ebel, Robert; Ueda, Kohei
  2. The Economics of Population Policy for Carbon Emissions Reduction in Developing Countrie By David Wheeler; Dan Hammer
  3. Does Eco-Certification Have Environmental Benefits? Organic Coffee in Costa Rica By Blackman, Allen; Naranjo, Maria A.
  4. Do Biofuel Subsidies Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions? By R. Quentin Grafton; Tom Kompas; Ngo Van Long
  5. On fair pricing of emission-related derivatives By Juri Hinz; Alex Novikov
  6. Rents in the European Power Sector due to Carbon Trading. By Cruciani, Michel; Keppler, Jan Horst
  7. Observed and projected climatic changes, their impacts and adaptation options for Sri Lanka: a review By Eriyagama, Nishadi; Smakhtin, Vladimir
  8. Climate Change, Irrigation and Pests: Examining Heliothis in the Murray Darling Basin By David Adamson
  9. Are Energy Efficiency Standards Justified? By Parry, Ian W.H.; Evans, David A.; Oates, Wallace E.
  10. Income Inequality and the Development of Environmental Technologies By Francesco Vona; Fabrizio Patriarca
  11. Non-user benefits emanating from enhanced water flow to the Yala Protected Area Complex By Weligamage, Parakrama; Butcher, W. R.; Blatner, K. A.; Shumway, C. R.; Giordano, Mark
  12. The Impact of the European Union Emissions Trading Scheme on the Finnish Economy By Seiji Ikkatai; Ikuma Kurita; Katsuhiko Hori
  13. Climate change, local institutions and adaptation experience: the village tank farming community in the dry zone of Sri Lanka By Senaratne, A.; Wickramasinghe, K.
  14. Mega projects in India Environmental and Land Acquisition Issues in the Road Sector By G. Raghuram; Samantha Bastian; Satyam Shivam Sundaram
  15. Tax reform in Europe over the next decades By Dr. Christin Lutz; Dr. Ulrike Lehr
  16. Global Income Distribution and Poverty: Implications from the IPCC SRES Scenarios By Alvaro Calzadilla
  17. Agriculture, environment and food security in the context of rice By Dharmasena, P. B.
  18. Using Effluent Charges in Promoting Investment in Water Pollution Control Technology: A Model of Coordination Failure among Firms By Geethanjali Selvaretnam; Kannika Thampanishvong
  19. Deforestation Impact on the Household Sustainable Local Development: Nicaragua case, 1998-2005. By Zuniga Gonzalez, Carlos Alberto
  20. Consumption Ozone-Depleting Substances Impact in Central American GDAP: An Input Oriented Malmquist DEA Index By Zuniga Gonzalez, Carlos Alberto
  21. The impact of inappropriate soil management on river water quality: a case study in the Kurundu Oya Sub-catchment of the Upper Mahaweli Catchment, Sri Lanka By Amarasekara, M. G. T. S.; Kumarihamy, R. M. K.; Dayawansa, N. D. K.; De Silva, R. P.
  22. Theology, Economics, and Economic Development By Peter N. Ireland
  23. EU rural policy: proposal and application of an agricultural sustainability index By Vecchione, Gaetano
  24. Developing Incentive Based Mechanisms for Watershed Protection Services through Participatory Hydrological Studies By Rajesh Gupta; Chetan Agarwal; Debashish Sen; Satya Prasanna Bambam
  25. How to minimize the negative impacts on Bundala National Park due to irrigation development of the Kirindi Oya River Basin By Abeywickrama, W. D. S.
  26. Utilization of aquatic plants: a method to enhance the productivity of water in seasonal tanks in the Anuradhapura District By Munasinghe, J. U.; Dilhan, M. A. A. B.; Sundarabarathy, T. V.
  27. How to Realize Breakthrough in WTO Doha Negotiations? By Zhou, Jian-Ming
  28. Impact of water saving irrigation systems on water use, growth and yield of irrigated lowland rice By Weerakoon, W. M. W.; Priyadarshani, T. N. N.; Piyasiri, C. H.; Silva, L. S.
  29. Improving water use efficiency under worsening scarcity: Evidence from the Middle Olifants sub-basin in South Africa By Walter, Teresa; Kloos, Julia; Tsegai, Daniel
  30. Are Biofuels Good for African Development? An Analytical Framework with Evidence from Mozambique and Tanzania By Arndt, Channing; Msangi, Siwa; Thurlow, James
  31. Selecting random parameters in discrete choice experiment for environmental valuation: A simulation experiment. By Petr Mariel; Amaya De Ayala; David Hoyos; Sabah Abdullah
  32. Institutions and Conflict: Communal Water Management in North-West Namibia By Diego Augusto Menestrey Schwieger
  33. Overview: institutions and policies for water resources management By Jinapala, K.; De Silva, Sanjiv
  34. Economic valuation of irrigation water under a major irrigation scheme (Gal Oya) in eastern Sri Lanka By Sivarajah, P.; Ahamad, A. N.

  1. By: Horowitz, John; Ebel, Robert; Ueda, Kohei
    Abstract: Most U.S. farmers prepare their soil for seeding and weed and pest control through tillageâplowing operations that disturb the soil. Tillage practices affect soil carbon, water pollution, and farmersâ energy and pesticide use, and therefore data on tillage can be valuable for understanding the practiceâs role in reaching climate and other environmental goals. In order to help policymakers and other interested parties better understand U.S. tillage practices and, especially, those practicesâ potential contribution to climate-change efforts, ERS researchers compiled data from the Agricultural Resource Management Survey and the National Resources Inventory-onservation Effects Assessment Projectâs Cropland Survey. The data show that approximately 35.5 percent of U.S. cropland planted to eight major crops, or 88 million acres, had no tillage operations in 2009.
    Keywords: Tillage, no-till, Agricultural Resource Management Survey, ARMS, U.S. crop practices, National Resources Inventory-Conservation Effects Assessment Project, NRI-CEAP, carbon baseline, carbon sequestration, Environmental Economics and Policy, Farm Management, Land Economics/Use, Resource /Energy Economics and Policy, Risk and Uncertainty,
    Date: 2010–11
  2. By: David Wheeler; Dan Hammer
    Abstract: Female education and family planning are both critical for sustainable development, and they obviously merit expanded support without any appeal to global climate considerations. However, even relatively optimistic projections suggest that family planning and female education will suffer from financing deficits that will leave millions of women unserved in the coming decades. Since both activities affect fertility, population growth, and carbon emissions, they may also provide sufficient climate-related benefits to warrant additional financing from resources devoted to carbon emissions abatement. This paper considers the economic case for such support. [Working Paper No. 229]
    Keywords: Female, education, family, planning, sustainable development, fertility, population growth,
    Date: 2010
  3. By: Blackman, Allen (Resources for the Future); Naranjo, Maria A.
    Abstract: Eco-certification of coffee, timber and other high-value agricultural commodities is increasingly widespread. In principle, it can improve commodity producers’ environmental performance, even in countries where state regulation is weak. However, evidence needed to evaluate this hypothesis is virtually nonexistent. To help fill this gap, we use detailed farm-level data to analyze the environmental impacts of organic coffee certification in central Costa Rica. We use propensity score matching to control for self-selection bias. We find that organic certification improves coffee growers’ environmental performance. It significantly reduces chemical input use and increases adoption of some environmentally friendly management practices.
    Keywords: certification, coffee, Costa Rica, propensity score matching
    JEL: Q13 Q20 Q56
    Date: 2010–11–22
  4. By: R. Quentin Grafton; Tom Kompas; Ngo Van Long
    Abstract: Conventional wisdom suggests that subsidising biofuel production will reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. This paper shows that in many cases, and for a wide range of parameter values, this is not true. Biofuel subsidies can generate supply-side response by fossil fuel producers that accelerates their rate of extraction, even in the case where fossil fuel extraction costs are stock dependent. Thus, policies designed to reduce GHG emissions may, perversely, hasten climate change.
    Date: 2010
  5. By: Juri Hinz; Alex Novikov
    Abstract: Tackling climate change is at the top of many agendas. In this context, emission trading schemes are considered as promising tools. The regulatory framework for an emission trading scheme introduces a market for emission allowances and creates a need for risk management by appropriate financial contracts. In this work, we address logical principles underlying their valuation.
    Date: 2010–11
  6. By: Cruciani, Michel; Keppler, Jan Horst
    Abstract: The European Union Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS) has imposed a price on the allowances for CO2 emissions of electricity companies. Integrating this allowance price into the price of electricity earns a rent for companies who have received these allowances for free. During Phase I, 2005–2007, rents corresponding to the aggregate value of allocated allowances amounted to roughly € 13 billion per year. However, due to the specific price-setting mechanism in electricity markets true rents were considerably higher. This is due to the fact that companies also that have not received any allowances gain additional infra-marginal rents to the extent that their variable costs are below the new market price after inclusion of the allowance price. Producers with low carbon emissions and low marginal costs thus also benefit substantially from carbon pricing. This paper develops a methodology to determine the specific interaction of the imposition of such a CO2 constraint and the price-setting mechanism in the electricity sector under the assumption of marginal cost pricing in a liberalized European electricity market. The article thus provides an empirical estimate of the true total rents of power producers during Phase I of the EU-ETS (2005–2007). The EU ETS generated in Phase I additional rents in excess of € 19 billion per year for electricity producers. These transfers are distributed very unevenly between different electricity producers. In a second step, the paper assesses the impact of switching from free allocation to an auctioning of allowances in 2013. We show that such a switch to auctioning will continue to create additional infra-marginal rents for certain producers and will leave the electricity sector as a whole better off than before the introduction of the EU ETS.
    Keywords: Carbon allowances; Electricity Market; European Union Carbon Trading Scheme;
    JEL: L94 Q48
    Date: 2010
  7. By: Eriyagama, Nishadi; Smakhtin, Vladimir
    Abstract: Climate is changing world-wide, and the science community in Sri Lanka has come up with ample evidence to suggest that the country’s climate has already changed. During 1961-1990 the country’s mean air temperature increased by 0.016 0C per year, and the mean annual rainfall decreased by 144 mm (7 %) compared to the period 1931-1960. In addition, mean annual daytime maximum and mean annual night-time minimum air temperatures increased. However, the bigger question of national importance is what Sri Lanka’s climate will look like in 50 or 100 years and how prepared is the country to face it. Apart from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) projections at the coarse global scale, few studies have attempted to project future climate scenarios for Sri Lanka and to identify climate change impacts on agriculture, water resources, the sea level, the plantation sector, the economy and health. Vulnerability and adaptation to climate change are the least studied areas. This paper reviews the status of climate change research and activities in Sri Lanka with respect to future climate projections, impacts, climate change mitigation and the country’s ability to adapt, and identifies existing knowledge gaps. Messages emerging from this review suggest that Sri Lanka’s mean temperature during the North-East (December-February) and South-West (May-September) monsoon seasons will increase by about 2.9 0C and 2.5 0C, respectively, over the baseline (1961-1990), by the year 2100 with accompanying changes in the quantity and spatial distribution of rainfall. Extreme climate events are expected to increase in frequency. These changes will bring about widespread impacts on the country’s agriculture and economy For example, an increase of 0.5 0C in temperature can reduce rice yield by approximately 6%; extended dry spells and excessive cloudiness during the wet season can reduce coconut yield resulting in annual losses between $32 and $73 million to the economy. Pilot studies in the Galle District suggest that sea level rise could inundate about 20 % of the land area of Galle’s coastal District Secretariat Divisions. Adaptation measures already undertaken in the agriculture sector include the development of low water consuming rice varieties and the use of micro-irrigation technologies. Tools have been developed for predicting seasonal water availability within the Mahaweli Scheme and annual national coconut production. However, Sri Lanka is yet to undertake a comprehensive national study on the vulnerability of her water resources and agriculture to climate change. The formulation of detailed and reliable future climate scenarios for the country is therefore, urgently required.Length: pp.99-117
    Keywords: Climate change; Impact assessment; Water resources; Agriculture; Adaptation
    Date: 2010
  8. By: David Adamson (Risk and Sustainable Management Group, University of Queensland)
    Abstract: Helicoverpa spp. (heliothis) are a major insect pest of cotton, grains and horticulture in the Murray‐ Darling Basin. Climate change is likely to make conditions more favourable for heliothis. This could cause regional comparative advantages in irrigation systems to change as management costs increase and yields decrease. Irrigation in the Murray Darling Basin produces 12 percent of Australia’s total gross value of agricultural production. If producers fail to consider climate change impacts on heliothis they may misallocate resources.Adamson et al. (2007 and 2009) have used a state contingent approach to risk and uncertainty to illustrate how producers could allocate irrigation resources based on climate change impacts on water resources. This is achieved by separating environmental risks and uncertainties into defined states of nature to which the decision makers have a set of defined responses. This approach assumes that the decision makers can achieve optimal allocation of resources as they have perfect knowledge in how they should respond to each state of nature (i.e. producers know how to manage heliothis now). Climate change brings a set of new conditions for which existing state parameters (mean and variance) will alter. Consequently a decision maker will have incomplete information about the state description; and the relationship between state allocable inputs and the associated state dependent output, until they have experienced all possible outcomes. Therefore if producers ignore climate changes to heliothis they may lock in resources that may prove to be unprofitable in the long run. The purpose of this paper is to suggest a framework that could be used for determining climate change impacts of heliothis (i.e. density), illustrate that management costs rise as density increases and how a stochastic function could deal with incomplete knowledge in a state contingent framework.
    Keywords: Murray Darling Basin, Heliothis, Irrigation
    Date: 2010–11
  9. By: Parry, Ian W.H. (Resources for the Future); Evans, David A.; Oates, Wallace E.
    Abstract: This paper develops and parameterizes an overarching analytical framework to estimate the welfare effects of energy efficiency standards applied to automobiles and electricity-using durables. We also compare standards with sectoral and economywide pricing policies. The model captures a wide range of externalities and preexisting energy policies, and it allows for possible “misperceptions”—market failures that cause underinvestment in energy efficiency.Automobile fuel economy standards are not part of the first-best policy to reduce gasoline: fuel taxes are always superior because they reduce the externalities related to vehicle miles traveled. For the power sector, potential welfare gains from supplementing pricing instruments with efficiency standards are small at best. If pricing instruments are not feasible, a large misperceptions failure is required to justify efficiency standards, and even in this case the optimal reductions in fuel and electricity use are relatively modest. Reducing economywide carbon dioxide emissions through regulatory packages (combining efficiency and emissions standards) involves much higher costs than pricing instruments.
    Keywords: standards, energy taxes, market failure, climate, power sector, gasoline
    JEL: Q48 Q58 H21 R48
    Date: 2010–11–23
  10. By: Francesco Vona (Observatoire Français des Conjonctures Économiques); Fabrizio Patriarca (University of Rome, department of economics)
    Abstract: Within rich countries, a large dispersion in the capacity of generating environmental innovations appears correlated to the level of inequality. Previous works analyse the relationship between inequality and environmental quality in a static setting. This paper builds a dynamic model more suitable to analyze technological externalities driven by the emergence of a new demand for green products. Under fairly general assumptions on technology and preferences, we show that: 1. the relationship between inequality and environmental innovation is highly non-linear and crucially depends on per-capita income; 2. an excessive inequality harms the development of environmental technologies especially in rich countries. Key to our results is the fact that externalities generated by pioneer consumers of green products benefit the entire population only for relatively low income distances. The empirical analysis robustly confirms our theoretical results, that is: whereas for rich countries inequality negatively affects the diffusion of innovations, per-capita income is paramount in poorer ones.
    Keywords: Inequality, Demand, Environmental Innovations, Pioneer Consumer.
    JEL: Q55 O14 O15
    Date: 2010–10
  11. By: Weligamage, Parakrama; Butcher, W. R.; Blatner, K. A.; Shumway, C. R.; Giordano, Mark
    Abstract: Water is a multiple use resource. Increasing scarcity and competition from various sectors is an important dimension to be considered in its management. Understanding the value of water to different water uses is, therefore, necessary to assist decision-making in water allocation among sectors. Although water used in agriculture can be valued using production function approaches, such direct valuation methods are not available for the environmental uses of water. This paper uses non-market valuation methods to estimate the economic value of a committed flow through a unique ecosystem, the Yala Protected Area Complex (YPC). The Yala Protected Area Complex is an important wildlife refuge situated in south-eastern Sri Lanka. Its large land extent, undisturbed nature, and abundance and diversity of fauna contribute to its uniqueness. The fact that the YPC is also the most visited national park in Sri Lanka is partially a result of this uniqueness. However, maintenance of the park’s ecosystem depends on the flow of the Menik Ganga. This flow is regulated by the Veheragala Reservoir Project, and there is now discussion of reducing flow into the park by about half of the current level. The proposed plan ensures dry season flow into the YPC and, therefore, has been deemed acceptable. However, there is a possibility that farmers will demand further water releases during the dry season which could in turn endanger the planned downstream water releases. So there is a potential trade-off between environmental and irrigation uses of water. A willingness to pay (WTP) survey was conducted in ten districts in Sri Lanka during the fourth quarter of 2008 to estimate the WTP of the general population of the country towards maintaining this important environmental resource. In the hypothetical market presented, participants were told of the need for financial contributions from the general public to ensure the release of a minimum downstream flow commitment of 50 MCM. Participants were also informed of how this flow would enhance the ecosystem of the YPC. A single bound dichotomous choice contingent valuation approach was used as the elicitation format. Nonobligatory voluntary contributions were solicited towards a trust fund that could be used to ensure release of the required quantity of water downstream during dry months. According to the results of a binary logistic regression, income, age, and religious attachments are important factors affecting the decision to contribute to environmental flow maintenance to the YPC. Sixty-five percent of respondents were willing to pay something to ensure the maintenance of an adequate environmental flow in the YPC. The estimated mean WTP for water releases to enhance the YPC is Sri Lankan Rupees (SLR) 435 per year. Over the requested payment horizon of 10 years, the present value of aggregate WTP from the Sri Lankan population to enhance the ecosystem of the YPC is SLR 12 billion. This quantity greatly surpasses the present value of net benefits from rice farming estimated at SLR 0.64 billion, which would be generated if the same quantity of water was used for irrigation for 10 years (assuming current prices and input intensities). Thus, there is a clear opportunity for national welfare gain by ensuring adequate flow in YPC.Length: pp.37-47
    Keywords: Water use; Multiple use; Wildlife; Habitats; Ecosystems; Irrigation water; Water allocation
    Date: 2010
  12. By: Seiji Ikkatai (Institute of Economic Research, Kyoto University); Ikuma Kurita (Institute of Economic Research, Kyoto University); Katsuhiko Hori (Institute of Economic Research, Kyoto University)
    Date: 2010–11
  13. By: Senaratne, A.; Wickramasinghe, K.
    Abstract: Farmers are in a continuous process of, individually and as community groups, adjusting to the observed variability in climate parameters. Climate shocks are considered by farmers in their decision-making as factors affecting risk and uncertainty, and farmers make their choices so as to minimize such risks. The overall outcome of these individual and community efforts is known as ‘climate adaptation’, which itself is a continuous process. Farmers are traditionally supported by local institutions in this process, which are also currently in a state of transformation. This study examines the climate adaptation responses of the village tank farming community in the dry zone of Sri Lanka in the context of transforming socioeconomic conditions and with the objective of identifying policy implications for adaptation to global climate change. The study was conducted in six Divisional Secretariat areas in the Anuradhapura District of the North Central Province. Both, primary and secondary data was collected in the study. The major sources of primary data included a series of focus group discussions and key informant interviews conducted with village tank farmers and local officers. The findings reveal that there are two major forms of voluntary adaptation responses by farmers against climate shocks: 1) aligning of farming activities with the recognized seasonal pattern of rainfall; and 2) management of rain water harvested in commonly owned village tanks. Farmers’ adaptation responses have been facilitated by local institutions that helped to adopt joint adaptation responses. However, recent socioeconomic dynamics introduced by rapid population increase, spread of commercial opportunities and change in agricultural technology have drastically altered conditions in the village tanks in favor of developing a commercial farming system. As a result, local institutions that traditionally facilitated the climatic adaptation responses are also in a state of transition. Therefore, farmers face problems in adapting to the impending risks and uncertainties of global climate change. The paper emphasizes the need for appropriate policy measures to facilitate the adaptive capacity of farmers.Length: pp.147-156
    Keywords: Climate change; Adaptation; Farmers; Arid lands; Villages; Tanks; Common property
    Date: 2010
  14. By: G. Raghuram; Samantha Bastian; Satyam Shivam Sundaram
    Abstract: Mega projects (primarily infrastructure) receive a sizable investment (~10%) of the gross fixed capital formation in India. Environmental clearances and land acquisitions have been the two major reasons for delays in the projects. However, there has been a steady increase in the proportion of projects running on schedule and a sharp decline in the proportion of projects with cost overruns. These accomplishments have been achieved due to better financing, project management, and reform in the regulatory frameworks related to environmental and land acquisition aspects. [W.P. No. 2009-03-07]
    Keywords: Mega projects, investment, India, Environmental, financing
    Date: 2010
  15. By: Dr. Christin Lutz (GWS - Institute of Economic Structures Research); Dr. Ulrike Lehr (GWS - Institute of Economic Structures Research)
    Abstract: Study for the European Environmental Agency, Copenhagen “Tax reform in Europe over the next decades: implication for the environment, for eco-innovation and for household distribution” Task A: Eco-innovation Literature review on eco-innovation and ETR Modelling of ETR impacts with GINFORS
    Keywords: Tax, Europe
    JEL: H
    Date: 2010
  16. By: Alvaro Calzadilla
    Abstract: The Special Report on Emissions Scenarios (SRES) has been widely used to analyze climate change impacts, vulnerability and adaptation. The storylines behind these scenarios outline alternative development pathways, which have been the base for climate research and other studies at global, regional and country level. Based on the global income distribution and poverty module (GlobPov), we assess the implication of the IPCC SRES scenarios on global poverty and inequality. We find that global poverty and inequality measures are sensitive to the downscaling methodology used. Our results show that future economic growth is crucial for poverty reduction. Higher per capita incomes tend to favour poverty reduction, while higher population growth rates delay this progress. Scenarios that combine high economic growth and convergence assumptions with low population growth rates produce better outcomes. China and India play a central role on poverty reduction and global inequality. While high economic growth rates in China and India may lift millions out of poverty, high population growth and stagnation in African economies could offset the situation
    Keywords: Global, poverty, income distribution, inequality, emission scenarios
    JEL: O50 I32 O15 Q54
    Date: 2010–11
  17. By: Dharmasena, P. B.
    Abstract: Agriculture requires inputs, which can be found within the system or need to be supplied from outside. The latter, referred to as the ‘Green Revolution’ in the 1950s and developed as the high external input agriculture, has spread over the world as a solution to the food crisis that arose due to World War II. The drive embraced a special package including high- yielding crop varieties, inorganic fertilizer, agro- chemicals and farm machineries. As a result, farmers in many developing countries began to practice mono-cropping with high external inputs. This has turned traditional ecological agriculture into environmentally destructive food production systems, which provided huge amounts of produce causing serious environmental damage. During the ‘Green Revolution’ traditional crop varieties were replaced by high-yielding new improved varieties, which had higher yield potential. However, natural pest resistance of these high-yielding varieties was generally poor, while nutritive requirements were high. Increased use of pesticides and chemical fertilizer is a matter of concern. Some of the issues and problems due to indiscriminate use of pesticides are: a) pest resistance; b) pest resurgence; c) health hazards; d) environmental pollution; and e) lower profits to farmers. Extensive use of chemical fertilizer has created environment issues such as nitrate leaching, release of greenhouse gases and eutrophication of inland water bodies. Millennium development goals earmark the eradication of extreme poverty and hunger, while ensuring environmental sustainability. This dispels the concept of achieving food security in any country through the adoption of high external input agriculture. Sri Lanka remains vulnerable to natural disasters such as floods, droughts, cyclones, landslides, epidemics etc., causing substantial threats to the food security situation of the country. Challenges posed by external factors due to globalization and open- economic policies have directed the country’s agriculture to move away from self- reliance. This situation demands a firm and perfect policy for the country’s agriculture. Furthermore, present agriculture does not show any indication of sustainability as it has ignored the centuries-old wisdom of traditional agriculture. Farmers’ dependency mentality evolved due to modern agriculture and government policies, which dealt with agriculture from time to time. This should be gradually replaced by developing farmers’ self- confidence, selfmotivation and empowerment. There is a great potential to increase productivity in Sri Lanka as only 40 % of the average potential for grain yield was achieved in different ecological and hydrological regimes. By narrowing this gap between actual and potential yield, Sri Lanka will not only increase productivity but also increase the competitive advantage for rice with other countries in the region. The experiences of the present productivity improvement program of the Department of Agriculture (DOA) have clearly shown that the average yield could be increased. In achieving food security in the country, a major set back in the development process is that institutional linkage among agencies responsible for water, land, agriculture and environment is very weak, and they work in isolation, setting their own targets. The need is felt for the immediate formulation of a firm policy to implement a sustainable agricultural production program in the country in order to ensure the food security in Sri Lanka.Length: pp.47-56
    Keywords: Rice; Food security; Farming systems
    Date: 2010
  18. By: Geethanjali Selvaretnam; Kannika Thampanishvong
    Abstract: Untreated wastewater being directly discharged into rivers is a very harmful environmental hazard that needs to be tackled urgently in many countries. In order to safeguard the river ecosystem and reduce water pollution, it is important to have an effluent charge policy that promotes the investment of wastewater treatment technology by domestic ?firms. This paper considers the strategic interaction between the government and the domestic firms regarding the investment in the wastewater treatment technology and the design of optimal effluent charge policy that should be implemented. In this model, the higher is the proportion of non-investing ?firms, the higher would be the probability of having to incur an effluent charge and the higher would be that charge. On one hand the government needs to impose a sufficiently strict policy to ensure that firms have strong incentive to invest. On the other hand, it cannot be too strict that it drives out ?firms which cannot afford to invest in such expensive technology. The paper analyses the factors that affect the probability of investment in this technology. It also explains the difficulty of imposing a strict environment policy in countries that have too many small firms which cannot afford to invest, unless subsidised.
    Keywords: water pollution, effluent tax, coordination failure, global games
    JEL: D8 O3 Q25 Q53
    Date: 2010–11
  19. By: Zuniga Gonzalez, Carlos Alberto
    Keywords: LSMS Survey, MECOVI, Technical Efficiency, Stochastic Frontier, Sustainable Local Development., Environmental Economics and Policy, Productivity Analysis, Q: 56, Q: 58.,
    Date: 2010–11–19
  20. By: Zuniga Gonzalez, Carlos Alberto
    Abstract: Contribution to Second Congress Rural Development.
    Keywords: Malmquist DEA Index, GDAP, ODS, hydrochlorofluorocabons (HCFCs), methyl bromide (Methyl Bromide), chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), Environmental Economics and Policy, Productivity Analysis, Q51, O47.,
    Date: 2010–11–16
  21. By: Amarasekara, M. G. T. S.; Kumarihamy, R. M. K.; Dayawansa, N. D. K.; De Silva, R. P.
    Abstract: The results of many studies have revealed that intensive farming on steep slopes, coupled with over application of fertilizers and accumulation of nutrients in downstream water bodies due to soil erosion, have contributed to environmental hazards in the Upper Mahaweli Catchment Area (UMCA) of Sri Lanka. The encroachment of riparian zones for exotic vegetable cultivation has aggravated this situation. In view of this, a study was conducted in the Kurundu Oya catchment, a micro-catchment of the UMCA, to investigate the soil management practices within the farming systems and their impacts on river water quality. Three villages were selected along the Kurundu Oya: Mahakudugala, Kumbalgamuwa and Batagolla. The study consisted of a survey of 150 households in 2007 and 2008, to gather information on the characteristics of householders and on soil management practices. A soil survey was carried out to analyze the soil fertility of farmlands. Water quality parameters were measured periodically in different sections of a selected stream. The results revealed that nearly 50 % of the riparian zones in the upper catchment of the Kurundu Oya stream are encroached to cultivate potato and other exotic vegetables. In addition, it was observed that over application of fertilizers on the vegetable plots was causing nutrient accumulation and the plots also recorded high levels of phosphorous (P) (above 75 ppm). Results of the water quality analysis showed that nitrate and available P levels were within the standard limits, but nitrate nitrogen (NO3-N) levels were close to the upper level of the standard limit. Therefore, in order to minimize water pollution, it is strongly recommended that fertilizer application is based on soil tests. In addition, encroachment of sensitive lands has to be addressed. Priority should be given to strengthening institutional capacity in order to facilitate the implementation of existing environmental legislation.Length: pp.49-60
    Keywords: Soil management; Soil degradation; Catchment areas; Erosion; Sedimentation; Water pollution; Fertilizer application; Nitrogen; Vegetable growing
    Date: 2010
  22. By: Peter N. Ireland (Boston College)
    Abstract: Although theologians and economists communicate their ideas to different professional audiences in different ways, we agree on many basic points. We agree, for instance, that all too often, a large gap appears between "what is" and "what should be." We agree, more specifically, that unregulated markets lead to undesirable and perhaps even disastrous environmental degradation. And we view with great suspicion government policies that redistribute wealth perversely, away from the needy and towards the affluent. But while economists share theologians' concerns about the problems that economic development brings, we can also point to benefits that come with rising income levels.
    Keywords: theology, economics, economic development
    JEL: A12 A13 O10 Q56
    Date: 2010–11–15
  23. By: Vecchione, Gaetano
    Abstract: In this paper I propose an Agricultural Sustainability Index (ASI) starting from a ‘political’ perspective: European legislation in the rural sector. I try to answer these questions. How can we measure sustainability in agriculture? How do we measure the enhancement (if any) of the European policy for sustainability in agriculture? Why do some geographical areas perform better than others? Considering these questions, the paper suggests a model for measuring sustainability in agriculture and an approach to compare performances among different geographical contexts. The model puts together different dimensions of sustainability in agriculture, combining Geographical Information System (GIS) analysis and Multi-Criteria Analysis (MCA). Using eighteen agricultural indicators divided into three dimensions, social, economic and environmental, the model incorporates the following stages: (i) indicator specification and definition of the decisional framework; (ii) indicators' normalisation by means of transformation functions based on the fuzzy logic approach; (iii) indicators weighted by Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) techniques; (iv) indicators aggregated to obtain the ASI. The model is tested on a specific area: Alta Val d’Agri, a rural area in the southern Basilicata Region. Final results show that ASI consistently synthesises the evolution of thirty years of rural development policy.
    Keywords: Agricultural sustainability; Indicators; GIS-MCA
    JEL: C43 Q01 R5
    Date: 2010–11–27
  24. By: Rajesh Gupta; Chetan Agarwal; Debashish Sen; Satya Prasanna Bambam
    Abstract: Peoples’ Science Institute (PSI), Dehradun and Winrock International India (WII), Gurgaon jointly initiated participatory hydrological studies in two micro-catchments that is, the Bhodi-Suan and Kuhan catchments that lie in the Changer region of Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh from August 2005 with the objective of promoting incentive-based mechanisms (IBM) for watershed protection services and improved livelihoods. Low cost hydrological monitoring stations and systems were established with the help of the watershed communities.
    Keywords: Hydrological Studies, Watershed Protection, communities, sciences, institute, low cost, monitoring stations, systems, Himachal Pradesh, Gurgaon, uneconomic returns, downstream reservoirs, natural resources, sustainable flow, benefits, village, rainfall
    Date: 2010
  25. By: Abeywickrama, W. D. S.
    Abstract: The environment is an important water user, and one that often finds itself at the bottom of the list of priorities when supplies become scare. This research studied how the needs of wetlands can coexist in parallel with irrigation demands and other human activities. Sri Lanka is a signatory to the Convention on Wetlands of International Importance for Migratory Waterfowl, known as the Ramsar Convention and Bundala Lagoon was declared Sri Lanka’s first Ramsar site, a wetland of international importance for migratory waterfowl, in 1990, because of its high bird species richness. The delicate ecological balance of these lagoons will be severely affected by the on-going Weheragala Reservoir project, which is designed to divert excess water from Manike Ganga River basin to Kirindi Oya River basin and the Malala Oya River basin development project. The main negative impacts are eutrophication, accumulation of pesticides and insecticides in the lagoons and siltation, and that lagoons will be converted to fresh water bodies. This research studied how to minimize these negative impacts using social, economic and engineering tools. The research findings are useful for researches, policymakers and decision-makers, who must find opportunities to improve farmers’ incomes and national food production, while and at the same time ensuring sustainable management of wetland ecosystems in Sri Lanka.Length: pp.1-6
    Keywords: Wetlands; Lagoons; Habitats; Irrigated farming; Environmental degradation
    Date: 2010
  26. By: Munasinghe, J. U.; Dilhan, M. A. A. B.; Sundarabarathy, T. V.
    Abstract: Heavy infestations of aquatic plants in a water body cause considerable economic and ecological losses. Many seasonal tanks in the Anuradhapura District suffer from this problem and cannot be neglected in water resource development and management schemes. This study was focused on the uses of aquatic plants and the problems caused by huge manifestations of aquatic plants in the selected seasonal tanks in the Anuradhapura District. The study was conducted in four seasonal tanks viz., Galkulama, Thirappane Maradankadawala and Thibbatuwewa in the Anuradhapura District. Information on the utilization of aquatic plants, exploitation level and harmful effects were gathered by using a structured questionnaire to interview people who were residing close to the study sites. The attitudes of the public towards the aquatic plants i.e., conservation of aquatic plants, the potential uses of native plants and harmful effects of invasive aquatic plants were collected. Twelve species were identified as economically important aquatic plants through the questionnaire survey. Among the 50 respondents, 92 % utilized aquatic plants for food, 58 % utilized flowers for offerings and decorations, 52 % utilized aquatic plants for medicinal purposes, 42 % utilized them as ornamental plants, 30 % used them as bio-fertilizers and 28 % utilized them for weaving. The edible aquatic plants consumed by the rural community in the Anuradhapura District are Ipomoea aquatica (72 %), Alternanthera sessilis (66 %), Nelumbo nucifera (64 %), Nymphaea pubescens (60 %) and Aponogeton spp. (52 %). Some edible aquatic plants, namely Neptunia oleracea, Ottelia alismoides and Ceratopteris thalictriodes, which are present in the Anuradhapura District, are not consumed, although these are consumed in many other countries. N. nucifera is the most commonly used flower for offerings in the temples and for decorations. In addition, N. pubescens, Nymphaea nouchali are also used for flowers. Bacopa monnieri, N. nucifera, Acanthus illicifolia, N. nouchali and Aponogeton spp. have been recorded as medicinally important plants. Though there are many ornamentally important aquatic plants, only N. pubescens, N. nouchali, B. monnieri, Nymphoides hydrophylla are used. Salvinia molesta and Eichhornia crassipes are the two aquatic plants commonly used as bio fertilizers. With reference to the questionnaire survey, there were seven major problems that were discovered to exist due to heavy infestations of aquatic weeds in the water bodies viz., sedimentation and unsuitability for domestic use, interference with navigation, effects on fisheries, blocking irrigation canals and evapotranspiration. The most problematic plants in the Anuradhapura District include E. crassipes, N. nucifera, S. molesta, Pistia stratiotes and Ceratophyllum demersum. Economically important aquatic plants available in the shallow water bodies of the Anuradhapura District, are marginally utilized, when compared with the utilization of aquatic plants in the global scenario. There appears to be a lack of a well organized action plan to cope with this situation. The public suffer a lot from the problems created by the heavy mass of aquatic plants, which covered the village tanks. The public are, however, willing to get organized and to engage in a participatory approach to restore their water bodies. There is a need for research and development of management strategies for the sustainable utilization of these valuable resources. Awareness programs should be conducted to promote sustainable utilization of aquatic plants. Creating awareness among the people about the nutritional and economic benefits of these natural resources will be useful for Sri Lanka, as a developing nation.Length: pp.23-32
    Keywords: Aquatic plants; Tanks
    Date: 2010
  27. By: Zhou, Jian-Ming
    Abstract: Originally published by âAfrica Linkâ (, Headquarters in Switzerland, at ( 93%3Ahow-torealize- breakthrough-in-wto-doha-negotiations&catid=49%3Abusiness-andeconomy& Itemid=58 =en)
    Keywords: Breakthrough, WTO, Doha negotiations, Agriculture, Non-agricultural market, Agricultural and Food Policy, Community/Rural/Urban Development, Environmental Economics and Policy, Farm Management, Food Security and Poverty, Institutional and Behavioral Economics, International Development, International Relations/Trade, Labor and Human Capital, Political Economy, Production Economics, Productivity Analysis, Resource /Energy Economics and Policy, F, K, O, P, Q, R,
    Date: 2010–03–30
  28. By: Weerakoon, W. M. W.; Priyadarshani, T. N. N.; Piyasiri, C. H.; Silva, L. S.
    Abstract: To meet the growing demand for food and other needs from an increasing population, the rice production in Sri Lanka, which was 3.87 million tonnes in 2008, has to be increased to 4.2 million tonnes by the year 2020. This requirement could be achieved by increasing productivity and/or by increasing the cultivated extent. In 2008, about 77 % and 68 % of the total paddy land extent was cultivated with either partial or full irrigation during the maha and yala seasons, respectively. A considerable extent of paddy land was either not cultivated or cultivated for other crops due to the scarcity of water in the dry and intermediate zones. Furthermore, with increased competition for water for domestic and industrial needs and climate change, there will be further reductions in the availability of water for rice cultivation. Conserving irrigation water would increase the cultivated extent of land while reducing the probability of ate season water-stress in the cultivated rice crop. We studied the impact of different soil water regimes on water use, nutrient uptake, growth and grain yield of 3 – 3½ age lowland rice at the Rice Research and Development Institute, Batalagoda, Ibbagamuwa. There was no significant difference in the grain yield in rice when grown under either saturated or flooded conditions, but the yield decreased significantly with alternate wetting and drying. However, under saturated conditions, the irrigation water requirement was significantly lower than the flooded condition. The lowest irrigation water requirement was recorded with saturated to dry conditions. The irrigation water requirement under flooded conditions, when compared with the saturated condition, increased by 39 % during the yala season. During the maha season, even though the total irrigation requirement was lower, when compared to saturated conditions, four times more irrigation water was required under flooded conditions. There was a significant increase in plant dry matter production and leaf N (nitrogen) under saturated conditions, when compared with conventional flooded conditions. These findings suggest that when soil water is maintained at a saturated level in lowland rice, a considerable amount of irrigation water could be saved without sacrificing grain yield.Length: pp.57-64
    Keywords: Rice; Irrigated farming; Water conservation; Irrigation systems
    Date: 2010
  29. By: Walter, Teresa; Kloos, Julia; Tsegai, Daniel
    Abstract: With the political changes in South Africa in the early 1990s, the South African government introduced a reform process in the entire water sector with the goal of a more enhanced and equitable water management system. This paper analyzes existing water allocation situations and applies a nonlinear optimization model to investigate the optimal intra- and inter-regional allocations in the Middle Olifants sub-basin of South Africa. Results show higher benefit from inter-regional water allocation. Reducing water supply levels to conform to the sustainable water supply policy, it can be shown that although water supply is reduced by approximately 50%, total benefits from water are only reduced by 5% and 11% for inter- and intra-regional allocation regimes respectively. These results indicate that alternative water allocation mechanisms can serve as instruments to offset for the effects of water scarcity.
    Keywords: Water allocation, IWRM, Olifants basin, South Africa, Africa, Resource /Energy Economics and Policy,
    Date: 2010–11
  30. By: Arndt, Channing; Msangi, Siwa; Thurlow, James
    Abstract: Many low income countries in Africa are optimistic that producing biofuels domestically will not only reduce their dependence on imported fossil fuels, but also stimulate economic development, particularly in poorer rural areas. Skeptics, on the other hand, view biofuels as a threat to food security in the region and as a landgrabbing opportunity for foreign investors. As a result of this ongoing debate, national biofuels task forces have been asked to evaluate both the viability of domestic biofuels production and its broader implications for economic development. To guide these complex evaluations, this paper presents an analytical framework that prioritizes different aspects of a comprehensive national assessment and identifies suitable evaluation methods. The findings from recent assessments for Mozambique and Tanzania are used to illustrate the framework. While these two country studies found that biofuels investments could enhance development, their experiences highlight potential tradeoffs, especially at the macroeconomic and environmental levels, where further research is needed.
    Keywords: biofuels, economic development, food security, poverty, Africa
    Date: 2010
  31. By: Petr Mariel (Department of Applied Economics III (Econometrics and Statistics), University of the Basque Country); Amaya De Ayala (Department of Applied Economics III (Econometrics and Statistics), University of the Basque Country); David Hoyos (Department of Applied Economics III (Econometrics and Statistics), University of the Basque Country); Sabah Abdullah (Environmental Economics Unit, Institute for Public Economics, University of the Basque Country)
    Abstract: This paper examines the various tests commonly used to select random parameters in choice modelling. The most common procedures for selecting random parameters are: the Lagrange Multiplier test as proposed by McFadden and Train (2000), the t-statistic of the deviation of the random parameter and the log-likelihood ratio test. The identification of random parameters in other words the recognition of preference heterogeneity among population is based on the fact that an individual makes a choice depending on her/his: tastes, perceptions and experiences. A simulation experiment was carried out based on a real choice experiment and the results indicated that the power of these three tests depends importantly on the spread and type of the tested parameter distribution.
    Keywords: choice experiment, preference heterogeneity, random parameter logit, simulation, tests for selecting random parameters
    JEL: Q51
    Date: 2010–11–23
  32. By: Diego Augusto Menestrey Schwieger
    Abstract: In the context of recent legal developments in Namibia promoting the common based management of water resources, the main focus of the project underlying this paper was to gain a detailed impression of how the rural communities in the country were dealing with the development of institutional arrangements for the water access and usage. Based on an anthropological fieldwork this paper aims to describe and to analyse the conflict over water a rural community in North-West Namibia is confronted with. From a theoretical perspective, the objective of this paper is to analyse the role of power in the development of institutions by means of Knight’s (1992) bargaining theory of institutional development. This paper concludes that the case study provides important evidence that the development of institutions at the local level can be the by-product of a strategic conflict and not the result of the users’ attempts to achieve collective goals, as frequently assumed by the mainstream communal natural resource management theory.
    Date: 2010
  33. By: Jinapala, K.; De Silva, Sanjiv
    Keywords: Water Policy; Participatory management; Irrigation water; Economic value; Water supply
    Date: 2010
  34. By: Sivarajah, P.; Ahamad, A. N.
    Abstract: The objective of this study was to estimate the economic value of irrigation water used in a crop farm (paddy and chilies) using a Linear Programming approach in the Senanayake Samudra (Gal-Oya Irrigation Scheme) Right Bank System area in the Ampara District.Length: pp.89-94
    Keywords: Irrigation schemes; Irrigation water; Pricing; Models
    Date: 2010

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