ERIC Number: ED271630
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1986-Aug
Reference Count: 0
An Economic Analysis of USDA Erosion Control Programs: A New Perspective. Agricultural Economic Report No. 560.
Strohbehn, Roger, Ed.
A study analyzed the total (public and private) economic costs and benefits of three U.S. Department of Agriculture erosion control programs. These were the Conservation Technical Assistance Program, Great Plains Conservation Program, and Agricultural Conservation Program. Significant efforts at funding for current programs were directed to cropland that erodes at less than five tons per acre per year. Analysis showed benefits exceeding costs on cropland with erosion rates of about 15 tons per acre per year. Offsite benefits (enhanced fishing and recreation activities and reduced sediment removal costs for navigation) accounted for significant erosion control benefits and indicated the significance of public benefits from soil conservation efforts. Four possible ways to increase the payoff from erosion control programs were suggested: (1) target public conservation funds to land with the highest erosion rates, (2) give increased recognition to offsite benefits, (3) provide conservation assistance based on the economic value of soil productivity loss and the value of reducing offsite damages rather than simply on physical erosion rates, and (4) expand the Conservation Reporting and Evaluation System to include data for estimating the full economic consequences and costs of conservation practices. (An appendix discusses the five major components of the benefit and cost analysis presented here.) A 72-item list of references is appended. (YLB)
Descriptors: Agricultural Education, Agriculture, Cost Effectiveness, Productivity, Program Costs, Program Effectiveness, Soil Conservation
Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC 20402 (Stock No. 001-019-00448-7).
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Economic Research Service (USDA), Washington, DC.