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The Impact of Global Warming on U.S. Agriculture: An Econometric Analysis of Optimal Growing Conditions

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  • Wolfram Schlenker

    (Columbia University)

  • W. Michael Hanemann

    (University of California at Berkeley)

  • Anthony C. Fisher

    (University of California at Berkeley)

Abstract

We link farmland values to climatic, soil, and socioeconomic variables for U.S. counties east of the 100th meridian, the historical boundary of agriculture not primarily dependent on irrigation. Degree days, a nonlinear transformation of the climatic variables suggested by agronomic experiments as more relevant to crop yield, gives an improved fit and increased robustness. Estimated coefficients are consistent with the experimental results. The model is employed to estimate the potential impacts on farmland values for a range of recent warming scenarios. The predictions are very robust, and more than 75% of the counties in our sample show a statistically significant effect, ranging from moderate gains to large losses, with losses in the aggregate that can become quite large under scenarios involving sustained heavy use of fossil fuels. © 2006 The President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Classification-JEL: Q10, Q15

Suggested Citation

  • Wolfram Schlenker & W. Michael Hanemann & Anthony C. Fisher, 2006. "The Impact of Global Warming on U.S. Agriculture: An Econometric Analysis of Optimal Growing Conditions," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 88(1), pages 113-125, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:88:y:2006:i:1:p:113-125
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • Q10 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - General
    • Q15 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Land Ownership and Tenure; Land Reform; Land Use; Irrigation; Agriculture and Environment

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