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CR prepress abstract   -  DOI:

Decadal climate variability, water availability and cropping: the value of forecast information in South-Central Texas

Jinxiu Ding*, Bruce A. McCarl

*Corresponding author:

ABSTRACT: Decadal climate variability (DCV) phenomena are ocean-based conditions that have climate influences persisting for a decade or more. Few studies have addressed the coupled agricultural and economic implications of these phenomena. Here we investigate the economic value of DCV information in a South Central Texas case study along with the nature of possible adaptations to the information. To do this we first perform an econometric estimation of DCV impacts on regional crop yields and groundwater recharge. Then we expand a regional economic and hydrological model to include DCV information. We find significant DCV impacts on regional aquifer recharge and crop yields for oats, dryland sorghum, and irrigated winter wheat. We find that DCV information has substantial value with perfect information ranging from $3.79 to $3.93 million per year plus benefits for springflow protection, while a less perfect forecast is worth $1.47 to $1.89 million annually. We also find DCV adaptations involve changes in crop mix and water use.