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Climate change and agriculture in Sri Lanka: a Ricardian valuation

S. Niggol Seo, Robert Mendelsohn () and Mohan Munasinghe

Environment and Development Economics, 2005, vol. 10, issue 5, 581-596

Abstract: This paper measures climate change impacts on Sri Lankan agriculture using the Ricardian method. The model examines the net revenue per hectare of the four most important crops in the country. The limited range of temperature variation allows only a simple test of temperature impacts, but the greater range of precipitation across the country distinguishesmore complex precipitation effects.We then examine the impacts of the climate predictions of five AOGCM models and two simple uniform change scenarios for SriLanka. The impacts of rainfall increases are predicted to be beneficial to the country as a whole in all five AOGCM scenarios, but temperature increases are predicted to be harmful. Nationally, the impacts vary from −11 billion rupees (−20 per cent) to +39 billion rupees (+72 per cent) depending on the climate scenarios. With warming, the already dry regions (the Northern and Eastern provinces), are expected to lose large portions of their current agriculture, but the cooler regions (the central highlands), are predicted to remain the same or increase their output. The paper reconfirms that climate change damages could be large in tropical developing countries, but highly dependent on the actual climate scenario.

Date: 2005
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