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Soil and water conservation technologies: A buffer against production risk in the face of climate change?: Insights from the Nile Basin in Ethiopia

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  • Kato, Edward
  • Ringler, Claudia
  • Yesuf, Mahmud
  • Bryan, Elizabeth

Abstract

"This study investigates the impact of different soil and water conservation technologies on the variance of crop production in Ethiopia to determine the risk implications of the different technologies in different regions and rainfall zones. Given the production risks posed by climate change, such information can be used by decision makers to identify appropriate agricultural practices that act as a buffer against climate change. Using a household- and plot-level data set, we apply the Just and Pope framework using a Cobb-Douglas production function to investigate the impact of various soil and water conservation technologies on average crop yields and the variance of crop yields, while controlling for several household- and plot-level factors. Results show that soil and water conservation investments perform differently in different rainfall areas and regions of Ethiopia, which underscores the importance of careful geographical targeting when promoting and scaling up soil and water conservation technologies. We find that although soil bunds, stone bunds, grass strips, waterways, and contours all have very significant positive impacts on average crop yields in low-rainfall areas, only soil bunds have significant risk-reducing effects in these areas with low agricultural potential. We also find that irrigation and use of improved seeds have insignificant risk-reducing effects in low-rainfall areas, suggesting that—as currently implemented—these interventions may not be appropriate adaptation strategies for these environments. Regionally, in the low-rainfall areas we find significant spatial heterogeneity, with soil bunds being risk reducing in Oromiya and Amhara, and stone bunds, grass strips, and waterways being risk reducing in the Southern Nations, Nationalities, and Peoples Region. Irrigation was only risk reducing in the high-rainfall areas of Benishangul-Gumuz. These results remain robust even after controlling for the major crops grown on the plot. Results show that soil and water conservation technologies have significant impacts on reducing production risk in Ethiopia and could be part of the country's climate-proofing strategy. However, results also show that one-size-fits-all recommendations are not appropriate given the differences in agro-ecology and other confounding factors." from authors' abstract

Suggested Citation

  • Kato, Edward & Ringler, Claudia & Yesuf, Mahmud & Bryan, Elizabeth, 2009. "Soil and water conservation technologies: A buffer against production risk in the face of climate change?: Insights from the Nile Basin in Ethiopia," IFPRI discussion papers 871, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  • Handle: RePEc:fpr:ifprid:871
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Quisumbing, Agnes R. & Kumar, Neha, 2014. "Land rights knowledge and conservation in rural Ethiopia: Mind the gender gap:," IFPRI discussion papers 1386, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    2. Gebrehaweria Gebregziabher & Lisa-Maria Rebelo & Simon Langan, 2016. "Interdependence in rainwater management technologies: an analysis of rainwater management adoption in the Blue Nile Basin," Environment, Development and Sustainability: A Multidisciplinary Approach to the Theory and Practice of Sustainable Development, Springer, vol. 18(2), pages 449-466, April.
    3. Gren, Ing-Marie & Carlsson, Mattias & Elofsson, Katarina & Munnich, Miriam, 2012. "Stochastic carbon sinks for combating carbon dioxide emissions in the EU," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(5), pages 1523-1531.
    4. Alice Turinawe & Lars Drake & Johnny Mugisha, 2015. "Adoption intensity of soil and water conservation technologies: a case of South Western Uganda," Environment, Development and Sustainability: A Multidisciplinary Approach to the Theory and Practice of Sustainable Development, Springer, vol. 17(4), pages 711-730, August.
    5. Nastis, Stefanos A. & Michailidis, Anastasios & Mattas, Konstadinos, 2011. "Crop biodiversity repercussions of subsidized organic farming in Greece," 2011 International Congress, August 30-September 2, 2011, Zurich, Switzerland 114628, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    6. Elizabeth Bryan & Claudia Ringler & Barrack Okoba & Jawoo Koo & Mario Herrero & Silvia Silvestri, 2013. "Can agriculture support climate change adaptation, greenhouse gas mitigation and rural livelihoods? insights from Kenya," Climatic Change, Springer, vol. 118(2), pages 151-165, May.
    7. Katengeza, Samson P. & Holden, Stein T. & Lunduka, Rodney W., 2016. "Adoption of Drought Tolerant Maize Varieties under Rainfall Stress in Malawi," 2016 Fifth International Conference, September 23-26, 2016, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia 246907, African Association of Agricultural Economists (AAAE).
    8. Nilsson, Pia & Backman, Mikaela & Bjerke, Lina & Maniriho, Aristide, 2017. "One cow per poor family: effects on consumption and crop production in Rwanda," Working Paper Series in Economics and Institutions of Innovation 462, Royal Institute of Technology, CESIS - Centre of Excellence for Science and Innovation Studies.
    9. Zhou, Li & Turvey, Calum G., 2014. "Climate change, adaptation and China's grain production," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 28(C), pages 72-89.
    10. repec:eee:agiwat:v:204:y:2018:i:c:p:11-16 is not listed on IDEAS
    11. Awudu Abdulai & Wallace Huffman, 2014. "The Adoption and Impact of Soil and Water Conservation Technology: An Endogenous Switching Regression Application," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 90(1), pages 26-43.
    12. Li, Aizhen & Bravo-Ureta, Boris E. & Okello, David & Deom, Carl & Puppala, Naveen, 2013. "Groundnut Production and Climatic Variability: Evidence from Uganda," Working Paper series 148353, University of Connecticut, Charles J. Zwick Center for Food and Resource Policy.
    13. Aizhen Li & Boris E. Bravo-Ureta & David K. Okello & Carl M. Deom & Naveen Puppala, 2013. "Groundnut Production and Climatic Variability: Evidence from Uganda," Working Papers 17, University of Connecticut, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Charles J. Zwick Center for Food and Resource Policy.
    14. Aberman, Noora-Lisa & Birner, Regina & Haglund, Eric & Ngigi, Marther & Ali, Snigdha & Okoba, Barrack & Koné, Daouda & Alemu, Takei, 2015. "Understanding the policy landscape for climate change adaptation: A cross-country comparison using the Net-map method:," IFPRI discussion papers 1408, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    15. Jolejole-Foreman, Maria Christina & Baylis, Katherine R. & Lipper, Leslie, 2012. "Land Degradation’s Implications on Agricultural Value of Production in Ethiopia: A look inside the bowl," 2012 Conference, August 18-24, 2012, Foz do Iguacu, Brazil 126251, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    16. Sejabaledi A. Rankoana, 2016. "Perceptions of Climate Change and the Potential for Adaptation in a Rural Community in Limpopo Province, South Africa," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 8(8), pages 1-10, August.
    17. Mulatu Debalke, Negash, 2011. "Determinants of farmers’ preference for adaptation strategies to climate change: evidence from north shoa zone of Amhara region Ethiopia," MPRA Paper 48753, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    18. Gebregziabher, Gebrehaweria & Rebelo, Lisa-Maria & Notenbaert, A. & Ergano, K. & Abebe, Yenenesh, 2013. "Determinants of adoption of rainwater management technologies among farm households in the Nile River Basin," IWMI Reports 201008, International Water Management Institute.
    19. Mintewab Bezabih & Abe Damte Beyene & Zenebe Gebreegziabher & Livousew Borga, 2013. "Social Capital, climate change and soil conservation investment: panel data evidence from the Highlands of Ethiopia," GRI Working Papers 115, Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment.
    20. repec:eee:ecolec:v:146:y:2018:i:c:p:621-632 is not listed on IDEAS
    21. Kato, Edward & Nkonya, Ephraim & Place, Frank M., 2011. "Heterogeneous treatment effects of integrated soil fertility management on crop productivity: Evidence from Nigeria," IFPRI discussion papers 1089, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).

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    Keywords

    Just and Pope; Risk increasing; Risk reducing; Stone bunds; Soil bunds; Waterways; Grass strips; Contours; Soil and water conservation; Low-rainfall areas; High-rainfall areas; Climate change;

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