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Modeling farm-level adoption of deficit irrigation using Positive Mathematical Programming

Listed author(s):
  • Cortignani, Raffaele
  • Severini, Simone
Registered author(s):

    Irrigated agriculture in the European Union (EU) is currently adapting to new conditions including the principle of the full recovery of water service costs, the reduction of water availability and the increasing variability in the prices of agricultural products. This has fostered an increasing number of economic analyses to investigate farmers' behaviour by means of mathematical programming techniques including Positive Mathematical Programming (PMP) models. However PMP models generally consider only activities observed in the reference period even if, under new policies and market conditions, farmers can adopt irrigation techniques they have not used previously. In particular, under increasing water costs or decreasing water availability, farmers can introduce Deficit Irrigation (DI) techniques that might not have been profitable earlier. We propose an extension of the PMP approach to include DI techniques not observed in the reference period. These alternative techniques are identified by means of a crop growth model developed by the FAO. We apply our methodology to a Mediterranean area using three sets of simulations involving: increases in water costs, reductions in water availability, and changes in the prices of the products obtained from irrigated crops. Lacking observations of alternative irrigation techniques, our approach captures potential technology adjustments and assesses the impact of changes in water policy and market conditions in a better way. Simulation results show that increasing water costs do not motivate adoption of DI techniques. Rather, farmers are induced to save water by switching from full irrigation to deficit irrigation when water availability is reduced or the prices of irrigated crops are increased.

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    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Agricultural Water Management.

    Volume (Year): 96 (2009)
    Issue (Month): 12 (December)
    Pages: 1785-1791

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:agiwat:v:96:y:2009:i:12:p:1785-1791
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    1. Heckelei, Thomas & Britz, Wolfgang, 2000. "Positive Mathematical Programming with Multiple Data Points: A Cross-Sectional Estimation Procedure," Cahiers d'Economie et de Sociologie Rurales (CESR), INRA (French National Institute for Agricultural Research), vol. 57.
    2. Blanco, Maria & Cortignani, Raffaele & Severini, Simone, 2008. "Evaluating Changes in Cropping Patterns due to the 2003 CAP Reform. An Ex-post Analysis of Different PMP Approaches Considering New Activities," 107th Seminar, January 30-February 1, 2008, Sevilla, Spain 6674, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    3. Berbel, J. & Gomez-Limon, J. A., 2000. "The impact of water-pricing policy in Spain: an analysis of three irrigated areas," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 219-238, March.
    4. Severini, Simone & Cortignani, Raffaele, 2008. "Introducing deficit irrigation crop techniques derived by crop growth models into a Positive Mathematical Programming model," 2008 International Congress, August 26-29, 2008, Ghent, Belgium 44010, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    5. Ottmar Röhm & Stephan Dabbert, 2003. "Integrating Agri-Environmental Programs into Regional Production Models: An Extension of Positive Mathematical Programming," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 85(1), pages 254-265.
    6. Joan Pujol & Meri Raggi & Davide Viaggi, 2006. "The potential impact of markets for irrigation water in Italy and Spain: a comparison of two study areas ," Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, vol. 50(3), pages 361-380, September.
    7. Heckelei, Thomas & Britz, Wolfgang, 2005. "Models Based on Positive Mathematical Programming: State of the Art and Further Extensions," 89th Seminar, February 2-5, 2005, Parma, Italy 234607, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    8. Farré, I. & Faci, J.-M., 2009. "Deficit irrigation in maize for reducing agricultural water use in a Mediterranean environment," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 96(3), pages 383-394, March.
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    10. English, Marshall & Raja, Syed Navaid, 1996. "Perspectives on deficit irrigation," Agricultural Water Management, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 1-14, November.
    11. Bartolini, Fabio & Bazzani, Guido Maria & Gallerani, Vittorio & Raggi, Meri & Viaggi, Davide, 2005. "Water Policy and Sustainability of Irrigated Farming Systems in Italy," 2005 International Congress, August 23-27, 2005, Copenhagen, Denmark 24518, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
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