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Economic Risk and Water Quality Protection in Agriculture

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Producers' and consumers' risk perceptions and preferences can affect perceived costs and benefits of agricultural water quality protection. Many studies find that integrated pest management actually reduces economic risks to farmers. Results from crop rotation and conservation tillage studies are mixed, while nutrient management studies indicate a potential for higher risk compared with conventional practices. Uncertainty about pollution damages to water resources is likely also to increase the perceived benefits of a given quantity of water quality protection practices. Public policies to reduce uncertainty about the costs and benefits of water quality protection practices may produce net social benefits.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

Publication date: September 1, 2000

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