Abstracts of Selected Papers

Article excerpt

NAREA Annual Meetings, Atlantic City, New Jersey, June 13-16, 2010

SESSION: Land Preservation. Moderator: Jacqueline Geoghegan (Clark University)

"Development of a Best Practices Framework for Agricultural Land Preservation Programs in Maryland: Future for Optimization." Yu Chen and Kent Messer (University of Delaware) and William Allen (The Conservation Fund).

Research shows that the use of optimization can improve the effectiveness of existing Maryland Agricultural Land Preservation Foundation (MALPF) programs. Survey results from MALPF administrators identify benefits and costs, as well as barriers to implementing optimization. Results will shape a best practices framework for MALPF by customizing optimization for each county.

"Assessing the Effectiveness of Conservation Easements for Wildlife Conservation in West Virginia." Sudiksha Joshi and Michael Strager (West Virginia University).

This study analyzes the effectiveness of the conservation easements in West Virginia in terms of their size, proximity to protected areas and other conservation easements, species richness, and land value. Spatial statistical analysis is used to characterize the established conservation easements and assess their complementary role in wildlife conservation.

"An Empirical Analysis of a 'Smart Subsidy'." Nathaniel Higgins (Economic Research Service, USDA), Shawn Bucholtz (Farm Service Agency), and Lori Lynch (University of Maryland).

This paper analyzes a policy meant to increase the benefits of conservation programs by encouraging the clustering of enrolled land. Landowners enrolling in Oregon's Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP) received a cash bonus when specific agglomeration targets were met. We use geo-located data to determine whether this incentive was successful in encouraging agglomeration.

"A Spatial Analysis of Local Preservation Referenda Appearance and Adoption." Martin Heintzelman and Dustin Grzeskowiak (Clarkson University).

This paper analyzes the appearance and passage of local preservation referenda in a dynamic context using spatial econometrics. We focus on the Massachusetts Community Preservation Act as our case study and look to understand the dynamics of passage as well as the impacts of the actions of neighboring towns.

SESSION: Food Production and Access. Moderator: Carolyn Dimitri (Economic Research Service, USDA)

"Agglomeration Economies and Firm Growth in the New York Food and Beverage Manufacturing Sector." Jeffrey Hall and Todd Schmit (Cornell University).

An analysis of firm-level and spatial factors affecting the revenue growth of surveyed New York State food and beverage manufacturing establishments was conducted. Agglomeration effects were examined for upstream, downstream, and within-stream firm clustering. Different effects from clustering for urban and rural firms were found.

"SNAP, Stigma and Food Access in the Northeast." Alessandro Bonanno and Jing Li (Penn State University).

This paper uses county-level data for the Northeast to assess the impact of food access on the effectiveness of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). Using a proxy for participation share as a measure of the program's effectiveness, we find that food access matters in increasing the reach of the program.

"Protection, Production, and Persuasion: Factors Influencing Pesticide Regulatory Decisions under the Food Quality and Protection Act." Elisabeth Newcomb Sinha (University of Maryland).

Overly protective pesticide regulation may result in productivity losses; a lack of regulation may result in the endangerment of human life and wildlife. Given the ramifications of pesticide regulation, this paper evaluates how the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency balances conflicting interests in the regulatory process.

"Constructing Estimates of the Hidden Cost of Food in the United States. …