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Climate variability and agriculture in Italy: a stochastic frontier analysis at the regional level

Sabrina Auci () and Donatella Vignani ()
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Donatella Vignani: Istat, Italian National Institute of Statistics, Environmental and Territorial Statistics Directorate

Economia Politica: Journal of Analytical and Institutional Economics, 2020, vol. 37, issue 2, No 2, 409 pages

Abstract: Abstract In the next future, climate change effects will represent a challenge for Europe and the Mediterranean area. These will have to cope with a rapid increase in climate variability. Although many economic sectors may be affected, agriculture is the most susceptible as climate heavily affects crop production trends, yield variability and the availability of areas suitable for cultivation. Using the stochastic frontier approach, the aim of this work is to analyse the impacts of climate variability on Italian regional technical efficiency in the agricultural sector for a period spanning from 2000 to 2009. Considering that technical inefficiency could be influenced by two main annual meteorological variables—the deviation of rainfalls and minimum temperature from the 1971–2000 mean value—and by seasonal rainfalls and minimum temperature moving average values, we find that annual, as well as spring and autumn rainfalls, have significant and beneficial effects on efficiency and hence on regional crop yields. The minimum temperature is efficiency-increasing in summer and winter while is detrimental in autumn.

Keywords: Climate change; Climate variability; Agricultural sector; Italian regions technical efficiency; Stochastic frontier approach (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Q10 Q18 Q54 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.1007/s40888-020-00172-x

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Handle: RePEc:spr:epolit:v:37:y:2020:i:2:d:10.1007_s40888-020-00172-x