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Open AccessReview

Jevons’ Paradox and Efficient Irrigation Technology

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Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853, USA
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Computing and Information Science, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853, USA
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College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853, USA
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2018, 10(5), 1590; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10051590
Received: 30 April 2018 / Revised: 12 May 2018 / Accepted: 13 May 2018 / Published: 16 May 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Agriculture: The State of the Great Debates)
Water is one of our world’s most essential natural resources, but it is also a resource that is becoming increasingly scarce. The agricultural use of groundwater is particularly important to manage sustainably and well. However, popular and well-intentioned water conservation and management policies, including those that encourage the adoption of more efficient irrigation technology, may have unintended and possibly perverse consequences if policy-makers do not account for water users’ behavioral responses to their policies. In particular, a Jevons’ Paradox may arise, whereby a technology that enhances the efficiency of using a natural resource does not necessarily lead to less consumption of that resource. In this paper, we discuss efficient irrigation technology, Jevons’ Paradox, and the possible perverse consequences of incentive-based programs for agricultural groundwater conservation. View Full-Text
Keywords: efficient irrigation technology; Jevons’ Paradox; incentive-based conservation programs; agricultural groundwater; perverse consequences; unintended consequences efficient irrigation technology; Jevons’ Paradox; incentive-based conservation programs; agricultural groundwater; perverse consequences; unintended consequences
MDPI and ACS Style

Sears, L.; Caparelli, J.; Lee, C.; Pan, D.; Strandberg, G.; Vuu, L.; Lin Lawell, C.-Y.C. Jevons’ Paradox and Efficient Irrigation Technology. Sustainability 2018, 10, 1590.

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