CHANGES IN WATER ALLOCATION MECHANISMS FOR CALIFORNIA AGRICULTURE
"Existing institutions allocating water in California reflect prior appropriation water rights established when water was abundant. These allocation rules queue users and do not encourage water conservation. Increased water scarcity and growing valuation of water's environmental benefits are inducing a transition to water allocation mechanisms that increase water efficiency in agriculture. Transferable rights systems will lead to market-like water allocation, induce farmers to adopt water conservation technology, and may not face strong objection from senior water rights holders. One must weigh the efficiency gains associated with transition from water rights to water markets against the transaction costs associated with installing facilities that enable water exchange and trading". Copyright 1994 Western Economic Association International.
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