Blending IrrigationWater Sources with Different Salinities and the Economic Damage of Salinity: The Case of Israel

Yehuda Slater, Ami Reznik, Israel Finkelshtain, Iddo Kan*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Israel’s water and vegetative agriculture sectors are interdependent, as the latter constitutes the solution for wastewater disposal. We employ a dynamic mathematical programming model that captures this interdependence for evaluating the economic damage of irrigation water salinity under two strategies of blending water sources with different salinities: Field blending, which enables farmers to assign water with a specific salinity to each crop, and regional blending, under which all crops experience similar water salinity. Relative to field blending, the buildup rate of desalination under regional blending is slightly expedited; nevertheless, reallocations of water sources across sectors and crops increase the average irrigation water salinity, and the overall welfare decreases by USD 0.08 per cubic meter of irrigation water-about 20% of the water’s average value of marginal product. Salinity-sensitive crops will face the largest per hectare production reduction if regional blending replaces field blending; however, the combined variations in the prices of irrigation water and agricultural outputs may motivate farmers to move irrigation water to these crops. Under equilibrium conditions in the two sectors, a 1% increase in the average salinity of the irrigation water supplied to a region reduces the value of the marginal product of that water by 2.4% and 1.6% under field and regional blending, respectively.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number917
JournalWater (Switzerland)
Volume14
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

Keywords

  • Agriculture
  • Economics
  • Irrigation
  • Model
  • Policy
  • Salinity
  • Water

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