IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/agisys/v106y2012i1p11-22.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Agricultural land management strategies to reduce phosphorus loads in the Gippsland Lakes, Australia

Author

Listed:
  • Roberts, Anna M.
  • Pannell, David J.
  • Doole, Graeme
  • Vigiak, Olga

Abstract

A target to reduce phosphorus flows into the Gippsland Lakes in south-eastern Australia by 40% in order to improve water quality has previously been established by stakeholders. This target, like many others worldwide, has been set mostly on the basis of environmental concerns, with limited consideration of issues such as technical feasibility, socio-economic constraints, political factors and associated costs and benefits. An integrated analysis at the catchment scale is undertaken to assess the agricultural land management changes required to achieve this target, and to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of these changes. Based on assumptions used, it appears technically feasible to achieve a 40% reduction in P load entering the Lakes. However, the least-costly way of doing so would require around A$1 billion over 25years, a dramatic increase in the current levels of funding provided for management. Results of a sensitivity analysis indicate that there is little or no chance of investment in a 40% reduction being cost-effective. On the other hand, a 20% P reduction could be achieved at much lower cost: around $80 million over 25years and requiring more modest land-management changes. Reliance on voluntary adoption of ‘Current Recommended Practices’ is unlikely to deliver changes in management practices at the scale required to have sufficient environmental impacts. Enforcement of existing regulations for the dairy industry would be amongst the most cost-effective management strategies. The major implications of this work for agriculturally induced diffuse-source pollution include the need for feedback between goal setting and program costs, and consideration of factors such as the levels of landholder adoption of new practices that are required and the feasibility of achieving those adoption levels. Costs, landholder adoption of new practices and socio-political risks appear neglected in the formulation of many water quality programs. The study provides a demonstration of an approach to integrated multidisciplinary research addressing complex environmental problems with multiple decision makers, multiple stakeholders, and high uncertainty. On the evidence of experience in this study, the approach deserves consideration in other contexts.

Suggested Citation

  • Roberts, Anna M. & Pannell, David J. & Doole, Graeme & Vigiak, Olga, 2012. "Agricultural land management strategies to reduce phosphorus loads in the Gippsland Lakes, Australia," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 106(1), pages 11-22.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:agisys:v:106:y:2012:i:1:p:11-22
    DOI: 10.1016/j.agsy.2011.10.009
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0308521X11001594
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Pannell, David J., 1997. "Sensitivity analysis of normative economic models: theoretical framework and practical strategies," Agricultural Economics of Agricultural Economists, International Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 16(2), May.
    2. Pannell, David J. & Roberts, Anna M. & Park, Geoff & Curatolo, April & Marsh, Sally P. & Alexander, Jennifer, 2011. "Integrated assessment of public investment in land-use change to protect environmental assets in Australia," Working Papers 102455, University of Western Australia, School of Agricultural and Resource Economics.
    3. Suzi Kerr & Kit Rutherford & Kelly Lock, 2007. "Nutrient Trading in Lake Rotorua: Goals and Trading Caps," Working Papers 07_08, Motu Economic and Public Policy Research.
    4. Alfons Weersink & Scott Jeffrey & David Pannell, 2002. "Farm-Level Modeling for Bigger Issues," Review of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 24(1), pages 123-140.
    5. David J. Pannell, 2008. "Public Benefits, Private Benefits, and Policy Mechanism Choice for Land-Use Change for Environmental Benefits," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 84(2), pages 225-240.
    6. Leon, L. F. & Booty, W. G. & Bowen, G. S. & Lam, D. C. L., 2004. "Validation of an agricultural non-point source model in a watershed in southern Ontario," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 65(1), pages 59-75, February.
    7. A. Yang & G. Huang & X. Qin, 2010. "An Integrated Simulation-Assessment Approach for Evaluating Health Risks of Groundwater Contamination Under Multiple Uncertainties," Water Resources Management: An International Journal, Published for the European Water Resources Association (EWRA), Springer;European Water Resources Association (EWRA), vol. 24(13), pages 3349-3369, October.
    8. Dono, Gabriele & Mazzapicchio, Graziano, 2010. "Uncertain water supply in an irrigated Mediterranean area: An analysis of the possible economic impact of climate change on the farm sector," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 103(6), pages 361-370, July.
    9. Maticic, Brane, 1999. "The impact of agriculture on ground water quality in Slovenia: standards and strategy," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 40(2-3), pages 235-247, May.
    10. Kay, Paul & Edwards, Anthony C. & Foulger, Miles, 2009. "A review of the efficacy of contemporary agricultural stewardship measures for ameliorating water pollution problems of key concern to the UK water industry," Agricultural Systems, Elsevier, vol. 99(2-3), pages 67-75, February.
    11. Sharpley, Andrew N. & Gburek, William J. & Folmar, G. & Pionke, H. B., 1999. "Sources of phosphorus exported from an agricultural watershed in Pennsylvania," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 41(2), pages 77-89, July.
    12. Rice, Ronald W. & Izuno, Forrest T. & Garcia, Raymond M., 2002. "Phosphorus load reductions under best management practices for sugarcane cropping systems in the Everglades Agricultural Area," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 56(1), pages 17-39, July.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Benefit:Cost analysis; Dairy; Diffuse source; Trade-offs;

    JEL classification:

    • Q15 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Land Ownership and Tenure; Land Reform; Land Use; Irrigation; Agriculture and Environment
    • Q25 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - Water
    • Q53 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Air Pollution; Water Pollution; Noise; Hazardous Waste; Solid Waste; Recycling
    • Q57 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Ecological Economics

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:agisys:v:106:y:2012:i:1:p:11-22. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Dana Niculescu). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/agsy .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.