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Title: Economic valuation of soil and water conservation technologies in northern Ghana
Author: Ahiale, Evelyn Dalali
ISNI:       0000 0004 2743 2735
Awarding Body: University of Reading
Current Institution: University of Reading
Date of Award: 2012
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Land degradation resulting largely from the environmentally unsustainable agricultural practices of smallholder farmers is a serious problem in Ghana. It is most serious in northern Ghana, where in spite of past efforts to solve it, persists because farmers' adoption of soil and water conservation technologies has not been encouraging. Farmers' inability to adopt soil and water conservation measures is mainly as a result of constraints resulting from market failures which lead to externalities like degradation. In the presence of externalities, government intervention is justified, and payment for environmental services, whereby incentive payments are made to resource managers, is one such intervention. The current study uses the choice experiment and contingent valuation methods to estimate farmers' WTA for soil and water conservation technologies, specifically soil and stone bunds, and examine the effect of collective action and other factors on farm households' willingness-to-accept. Based on data collected from 305 smallholder farm households in northern Ghana, and using the Bayesian approach, the mixed logit and interval-data probit models were employed to analyze choice experiment and contingent valuation data respectively. Results from both the choice experiment and the contingent valuation methods revealed that farmers like collective action and are prepared to receive less when they act collectively. From the choice experiment, farmers were willing to accept ¢49.40/acre (or ¢125.30/hectare) less in order to act collectively under a compensation scheme for the adoption of SWC technologies. Farmers were willing to accept ¢182.00/acre (¢455.00/hectare) to adopt a SWC technology in order to maintain landscape quality and ¢66.20/acre (¢165.50/hectare) to improve landscape quality. Results from the contingent valuation revealed that farm households would accept from ¢913.46 - 922.08/hectare for stone bund and ¢705.34-714.92/hectare for soil bund. Farmers belonging to farmers' groups were willing to accept from ¢23.55 - 62.54/hectare less than non-group members depending on the technology and type of participation. Willingness of farm households to accept compensation were positively correlated with education, wealth status, farm households with adequate labour supply, the severity of erosion of their farms, and whether the household has already adopted either stone or soil bunds. Age, farm size, and previous participation in soil and water conservation projects are some variables found to be negatively correlated to willingness-to-accept. It is recommended that collective action/contracting be designed into payment schemes to reduce their transaction costs to make them more successful.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available