Flood risk, land use and private participation in embankment maintenance in Indian Sundarbans
Ecological Economics, 2015, vol. 118, issue C, 272-284
This paper analyzes the complementarities between land productivity and conservation investments in the context of river embankment maintenance in the Indian Sundarbans. The study finds that households whose principal occupation is aquaculture commit more resources to embankment maintenance relative to those in non-aquaculture employment. While conservation efforts are greater in all types of aquaculture plots irrespective of distance from the embankments, such efforts unambiguously decrease for agricultural plots that are located at a distance from the embankments. Private returns to traditional aquaculture are much higher than returns to agriculture, enabling aquaculture households in invest in managing their local public good. However, there is evidence of free riding in canal-based aquaculture when multiple users draw water from a single source. Head-enders with greater wealth as well as intense social networks tend to free-ride while tail-enders with less land holdings contribute more towards canal maintenance. Furthermore, public intervention in embankment maintenance may be crowding out private efforts. Thus, in primarily agricultural areas, productivity-enhancing policies like adoption of salt tolerant crops with supportive extension activities may be more efficient than policies that fully subsidize public good maintenance.
Keywords: Public good; Embankment maintenance; Voluntary contribution; Uncertainty; Sundarbans; India (search for similar items in EconPapers)
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations Track citations by RSS feed
Downloads: (external link)
Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.
Export reference: BibTeX
RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan)
Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:eee:ecolec:v:118:y:2015:i:c:p:272-284
Access Statistics for this article
Ecological Economics is currently edited by C. J. Cleveland
More articles in Ecological Economics from Elsevier
Series data maintained by Dana Niculescu ().