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The Interstate River Compact as a Water Allocation Mechanism: Efficiency Aspects

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  • Lynne Lewis Bennett
  • Charles W. Howe
  • James Shope
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    Abstract

    Interstate river compacts are widely used to allocate water among riparian states. Twenty-one compacts are currently in force in the western United States, and these compacts are mostly of two types: those that allocate a fixed amount or flow of water to individual states; and those that allocate percentages of available water to the riparian states. This study compares the performance of the two resulting allocations with that resulting from basin-wide optimization without compact constraints. While widely varying hydrologic and economic characteristics of river basins create a large set of possible outcomes, a range of stylized case studies indicates that percentage compacts are likely to generate greater net benefits and to result in more equitable risk-sharing than fixed compacts under many circumstances. In light of recent compact negotiations in the southeastern United States, it is recommended that efficiency analyses under present and future conditions be made a part of all compact negotiations. Copyright 2000, Oxford University Press.

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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1111/0002-9092.00098
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Agricultural and Applied Economics Association in its journal American Journal of Agricultural Economics.

    Volume (Year): 82 (2000)
    Issue (Month): 4 ()
    Pages: 1006-1015

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    Handle: RePEc:oup:ajagec:v:82:y:2000:i:4:p:1006-1015

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    Cited by:
    1. Harold Houba & Erik Ansink, 2013. "Sustainable Agreements on Stochastic River Flow," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 13-182/II, Tinbergen Institute.
    2. Erik Ansink & Arjan Ruijs, 2007. "Climate Change and the Stability of Water Allocation Agreements," Working Papers 2007.16, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
    3. Erik Ansink, 2009. "Self-enforcing Agreements on Water allocation," Working Papers 2009.73, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
    4. Ambec, Stefan & Dinar, Ariel & McKinney, Daene, 2013. "Water sharing agreements sustainable to reduced flows," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 66(3), pages 639-655.
    5. Bennett, Lynne Lewis, 2000. "The integration of water quality into transboundary allocation agreements Lessons from the southwestern United States," Agricultural Economics: The Journal of the International Association of Agricultural Economists, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 24(1), December.
    6. Bennett, Lynne Lewis, 2000. "The integration of water quality into transboundary allocation agreements: Lessons from the southwestern United States," Agricultural Economics, Blackwell, vol. 24(1), pages 113-125, December.

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