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Abstract

A positive mathematical programming model was constructed in this study to assess the effect of three water pricing scenarios on Teboulba’s agricultural production systems. The effects of these scenarios were estimated for three groups of farmers from three irrigated districts. Results show that water demand in group 1 remains inelastic until achieving the price of 0.20 TD. A price above this level decreases water consumption, farmer’s incomes as well as seasonal labor demand. For groups 2 and 3, the water demand curves remain highly inelastic even with a full cost recovery price. However, once reaching this last price, the model shows important income reductions reaching 20% of the current observed income. Moreover, a pricing policy aiming to recover operational and maintenance costs and which will be implemented independently from other economic, social and environmental measures can threaten the sustainability of the production systems in the region.

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