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Cost-effective design of agri-environmental payment programs: U.S. experience in theory and practice

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  • Claassen, Roger
  • Cattaneo, Andrea
  • Johansson, Robert

Abstract

Key features of U.S. agri-environmental programs are reviewed and analyzed using literature review and program data. We focus, in particular, on several key questions: Has benefit-cost targeting increased the environmental benefit obtained from program budgets? Has competitive bidding reduced program costs? To what extent have these program designs resulted in additional gain (that would not have otherwise been obtained)? Previous research illustrates how benefit-cost targeting using environmental indices (such as the Environmental Benefits Index in the Conservation Reserve Program) can increase environmental cost-effectiveness. Previous research and data from two U.S. programs suggests that bidding has reduced costs, but that the full potential of bidding may not have been realized. Finally, most U.S. programs are intended to yield environmental gains that would not have otherwise been obtained, but sometimes fall short of this goal.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Ecological Economics.

Volume (Year): 65 (2008)
Issue (Month): 4 (May)
Pages: 737-752

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Handle: RePEc:eee:ecolec:v:65:y:2008:i:4:p:737-752

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/ecolecon

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Cited by:
  1. Giannetti, B.F. & Ogura, Y. & Bonilla, S.H. & Almeida, C.M.V.B., 2011. "Emergy assessment of a coffee farm in Brazilian Cerrado considering in a broad form the environmental services, negative externalities and fair price," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 104(9), pages 679-688.
  2. Engel, Stefanie & Pagiola, Stefano & Wunder, Sven, 2008. "Designing payments for environmental services in theory and practice: An overview of the issues," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(4), pages 663-674, May.
  3. Thomas Coisnon & Walid OUESLATI & Julien Salanié, 2012. "Agri-environmental policy and urban sprawl patterns: A general equilibrium analysis," Working Papers halshs-00753221, HAL.
  4. Ina, Porras & Bruce, Alyward & Jeff, Dengel, 2013. "Monitoring payments for watershed services schemes in developing countries," MPRA Paper 47185, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  5. Skidmore, Samuel & Santos, Paulo & Leimona, Beria, 2012. "Seeing REDD: A Microeconomic Analysis of Carbon Sequestration in Indonesia," 2012 Conference, August 18-24, 2012, Foz do Iguacu, Brazil 126688, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
  6. Kelly, Peter & Huo, Xuexi, 2013. "Do farmers or governments make better land conservation choices? Evidence from China's Sloping Land Conversion Program," Journal of Forest Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(1), pages 32-60.
  7. Peter C. Boxall & Orsolya Perger & Marian Weber, 2013. "Reverse Auctions for Agri-Environmental Improvements: Bid-Selection Rules and Pricing for Beneficial Management Practice Adoption," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 39(s2), pages 23-36, August.
  8. Wunder, Sven & Engel, Stefanie & Pagiola, Stefano, 2008. "Taking stock: A comparative analysis of payments for environmental services programs in developed and developing countries," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(4), pages 834-852, May.
  9. Russell, Noel P. & Sauer, Johannes, 2012. "Efficient Procurement of Ecosystem Services – Adverse versus Beneficial Selection," 86th Annual Conference, April 16-18, 2012, Warwick University, Coventry, UK 134988, Agricultural Economics Society.
  10. Cordero Salas, Paula & Roe, Brian & Sohngen, Brent, 2013. "Addressing additionality in REDD contracts when formal enforcement is absent," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6502, The World Bank.
  11. Vatn, Arild, 2010. "An institutional analysis of payments for environmental services," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(6), pages 1245-1252, April.
  12. Gómez-Baggethun, Erik & de Groot, Rudolf & Lomas, Pedro L. & Montes, Carlos, 2010. "The history of ecosystem services in economic theory and practice: From early notions to markets and payment schemes," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(6), pages 1209-1218, April.
  13. Chobotová, Veronika, 2013. "The role of market-based instruments for biodiversity conservation in Central and Eastern Europe," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(C), pages 41-50.
  14. Markus Groth, 2009. "The transferability and performance of payment-by-results biodiversity conservation procurement auctions: empirical evidence from northernmost Germany," Working Paper Series in Economics 119, University of Lüneburg, Institute of Economics.
  15. Russell, Noel P. & Sauer, Johannes, 2012. "Beneficial selection and the efficient procurement of ecosystem services," 2012 Annual Meeting, August 12-14, 2012, Seattle, Washington 124894, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  16. KURKALOVA, Lyubov A. & WADE, Tara R., 2013. "Aggregated Choice Data And Logit Models: Application To Environmental Benign Practices Of Conservation Tillage By Farmers In The State Of Iowa," Applied Econometrics and International Development, Euro-American Association of Economic Development, vol. 13(2), pages 119-128.
  17. Schönhart, Martin & Schauppenlehner, Thomas & Schmid, Erwin & Muhar, Andreas, 2011. "Integration of bio-physical and economic models to analyze management intensity and landscape structure effects at farm and landscape level," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 104(2), pages 122-134, February.
  18. Wade, Tara & Kurkalova, Lyubov A. & Secchi, Silvia, 2012. "Using the logit model with aggregated choice data in estimation of Iowa corn farmers’ conservation tillage subsidies," 2012 Annual Meeting, August 12-14, 2012, Seattle, Washington 124974, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  19. Salas, Paula Cordero & Roe, Brian E. & Sohngen, Brent, 2012. "Addressing Additionality in REDD Contracts when Formal Enforcement is Absent," 2012 Annual Meeting, August 12-14, 2012, Seattle, Washington 124505, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  20. Neitzel, K. Christoph & Caro-Borrero, Angela Piedad & Revollo-Fernandez, Daniel & Aguilar-Ibarra, Alonso & Ramos, Alya & Almeida-Leñero, Lucia, 2014. "Paying for environmental services: Determining recognized participation under common property in a peri-urban context," Forest Policy and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 46-55.
  21. Rolfe, John & Windle, Jill, 2011. "Using auction mechanisms to reveal costs for water quality improvements in Great Barrier Reef catchments in Australia," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 98(4), pages 493-501, February.
  22. Yang, Wanhong & Bryan, Brett A. & MacDonald, Darla Hatton & Ward, John R. & Wells, Geoff & Crossman, Neville D. & Connor, Jeffrey D., 2010. "A conservation industry for sustaining natural capital and ecosystem services in agricultural landscapes," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(4), pages 680-689, February.
  23. Wünscher, Tobias & Engel, Stefanie & Wunder, Sven, 2008. "Spatial targeting of payments for environmental services: A tool for boosting conservation benefits," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(4), pages 822-833, May.
  24. Grout, Cyrus A., 2009. "Incentives for Spatially Coordinated Land Conservation: A Conditional Agglomeration Bonus," Western Economics Forum, Western Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 8(02).
  25. Börner, Jan & Wunder, Sven & Wertz-Kanounnikoff, Sheila & Tito, Marcos Rügnitz & Pereira, Ligia & Nascimento, Nathalia, 2010. "Direct conservation payments in the Brazilian Amazon: Scope and equity implications," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(6), pages 1272-1282, April.

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