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Optimal control of locusts in subsistence farming areas

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Listed:
  • Levy, Amnon
  • Caputo, Michael R.

Abstract

Locust swarms hit subsistence-staple-crop-growing households at random and are not privately controllable. An aerial-spraying optimal control model that supports the said households' livelihood at least expected cost is therefore developed. The qualitative properties of the model are analysed under economically plausible but mild assumptions. The steady state comparative statics reveal that the locust swarm size and the probability of a household's crop being destroyed by a swarm decrease with the number of households, yield per household, and the staple crop's replacement price, and increase with the marginal cost of spraying and the planner's discount rate. A local comparative dynamics analysis is also conducted, as it provides the necessary economic intuition behind other ostensibly anomalous steady-state comparative statics results.

Suggested Citation

  • Levy, Amnon & Caputo, Michael R., 2008. "Optimal control of locusts in subsistence farming areas," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 191(2), pages 504-516, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ejores:v:191:y:2008:i:2:p:504-516
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Gershon Feder, 1979. "Pesticides, Information, and Pest Management under Uncertainty," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 61(1), pages 97-103.
    2. Cowan, Robin & Gunby, Philip, 1996. "Sprayed to Death: Path Dependence, Lock-In and Pest Control Strategies," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 106(436), pages 521-542, May.
    3. Jean-Daniel M. Saphores, 2000. "The Economic Threshold with a Stochastic Pest Population: A Real Options Approach," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 82(3), pages 541-555.
    4. Carlson, Gerald A. & Zilberman, David & Miranowski, John, 1993. "Agricultural and Resource Economics," Staff General Research Papers Archive 11104, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • O13 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Agriculture; Natural Resources; Environment; Other Primary Products
    • O18 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Urban, Rural, Regional, and Transportation Analysis; Housing; Infrastructure
    • O21 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Development Planning and Policy - - - Planning Models; Planning Policy

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