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Gone with the wind: Impact of soil-dust storms on farm income

Heydar Gholizadeh, Mohammad Hossein Zoghipour, Mohammad Torshizi, Mohammad Reza Nazari and Narges Moradkhani

Ecological Economics, 2021, vol. 188, issue C

Abstract: Dust storms are one of the less-studied consequences of climate change that affect people, their health, and economic activities in various parts of the world. This is particularly evident in regions across the “dust belt” – i.e., from the west coast of North Africa to China, over the Sahara, the Middle East, Central and South Asia. Agriculture is influenced by dust storms more than other economic sectors because of its necessary interactions with, and dependence on, the environment. This study explores the effect of dust storms on Iranian barley farmers' livelihood. The study area has been increasingly affected by dust storms originating from other countries on the dust belt. Our results indicate that these storms have a negative and significant effect on barley farmers' net revenues during the years 2000–2016. We find that a one hour increase in dust occurrence reduces barley farmers' income, from irrigated barley and rain-fed barley, by US$ 0.36 and US$ 0.08 per hectare, respectively. The findings have important implications regarding the income inequality effects of climate change; those significantly affected by dust storms are often small-scale farmers whose livelihood depends on the income from very few acres of land.

Keywords: Climate Change; Ricardian Rent; Income Inequality; Dust Storms (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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DOI: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2021.107133

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