Urbana Campus Research Calendar (OVCRI)

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Targeted Subsidies for Water Conservation in Smallholder Agriculture

Event Type
Agricultural and Consumer Economics (ACE)
426 Mumford Hall
wifi event
Oct 6, 2023   12:00 - 1:00 pm  
Kyle Emerick, Associate Professor, Tufts University Dept. Economics
Originating Calendar
ACE Seminars

Abstract - click on the title above to link to the corresponding paper. 
Groundwater depletion threatens long-term food security in developing countries. Moreover, groundwater pumping contributes to climate change. We evaluate the effect of targeted subsidies for technology to use groundwater more efficiently in agriculture. Using a randomized controlled trial across 360 villages in Bangladesh, we show that subsidies reduce electricity used for pumping by 38 percent, but only when targeted to water sellers. Subsidizing technology to individual farmers has smaller effects. Features of the groundwater market can explain this result. Natural monopolist water sellers charge fixed fees to farmers, but maintain a role in irrigation planning, incentivizing them to adopt conservation practices. 

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