APEC Research Reports
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- ItemFactors Influencing Participation in BR&E Programs: A Study of Local Coordinators in Six States(Department of Applied Economics and Statistics, University of Delaware, Newark, DE., 2000-05) Ilvento, Thomas W.; Loveridge, ScottThis study used a telephone survey of coordinators of local Business Retention and Expansion Programs (BR&E). The focus of the of the study was to survey BR&E coordinators who conducted programs in the last five years to better understand the factors that lead the community and the coordinator to undertake a BR&E program. We used state program leaders to identify coordinators in six participating states: Kentucky, Maine, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, and West Virginia. The states represented programs that had a similar approach to BR&E in terms of a community approach which used volunteers by design. A total of 94 Coordinators were identified, and 80 responded to the survey during the summer and fall of 1998 (85% response rate). Of those that did not respond, six were no longer working in the community and could not be contacted. Initial contact was made by phone to explain the project and to schedule a phone interview. Following the initial phone contact, a copy of the survey and an explanation of the project was mailed to the respondent. Most of the interviews were conducted over the phone, but in some cases coordinators sent the surveys in the mail. For the most part coordinators reported few concerns or conflicts prior to beginning a BR&E program. However, local coordinators reported that many businesses were not aware of programs available to them and that this was a motivating force in initiating the program. Furthermore, many indicated that citizens were not knowledgeable about economic development and the problems faced by local businesses. In general the coordinators recognized and supported many of the benefits that we generally use to promote BR&E programs. When asked what attracted them to a BR&E program they answered (in order of importance) -- the program emphasized a response to local business needs; it focused on existing local businesses; it allowed for local decision-making; and there was a written report and written priority projects. Coordinators were also asked to rate factors about the program that influenced their personal participation. Their answers reflected a mix of community and personal interests. The factors with the highest rankings were: it would help firms remain and grow; it would help them develop better contacts with businesses; it would help them learn about businesses; it would help their organization; and the program was needed in the community.
- ItemA Spatial Analysis of the Distributional Effects of Water Quantity Management(Department of Applied Economics and Statistics, University of Delaware, Newark, DE., 2001-04) Ehemann, Robert, W.; Duke, Joshua M.; Mackenzie, JohnWater supply managers in growing areas must address increasing demand for an essentially fixed, though highly variable, resource. This worldwide problem inevitably arises as demand increases with population and standards of living (Loucks 1999, Mayor 1997). Currently, 505 million people live in water-scarce or water-stressed conditions, and this number could rise to 3.2 billion people by the year 2025 (Dunphy 2000). Water-stressed locations are not necessarily arid regions of the world. Nonporous materials in urban and suburban areas prevent rainwater from percolating through the soil. Excess water becomes runoff, which erodes riverbeds, prevents groundwater recharge, and exacerbates water supply issues. Spatially, suburban growth distributes the demand for water over a greater area. Water delivery requires increasingly more infrastructure, including holding tanks, reservoirs, treatment plants, and pumping stations. At the very least, suburban growth adds miles of new piping to the system and requires a tremendous amount of water to keep the lines full. This paper investigates the relationship between the spatial distribution of the residential population and residential water demand. Specifically, three water quantity management strategies are compared in times of deficit. Conservation is the root of demand-side management. However, conservation has many interpretations. Chesnutt and Beecher (1998) describe ecological, hydrological, traditional-economic, and resource-economic perspectives on conservation. The ecological perspective emphasizes ethical constraints to avoid the consequences of over consuming in a common property setting. The hydrological perspective focuses on the water cycle and engineering solutions to maintain water supply. Water allocation efficiency through pricing guides the traditional-economic perspective, while the resource-economic perspective merges a sustainability criterion with the traditional perspective. Any attempt to implement water management policy will undoubtedly satisfy those with one perspective and offend others. For instance, objections to the use of price arise from those who see it as insufficiently addressing ethical or supply concerns. This paper attempts to address such concerns by examining the distributional and supply impacts on residents when water scarcity pricing is implemented.
- ItemDesigning a Web-based Interface for Student Peer Review on a Unix Server(Department of Applied Economics and Statistics, University of Delaware, Newark, DE., 2002-02) Duke, Joshua M.; Whisler, JeffThis report describes an application of and the procedures for developing a web-based interface on a Unix server, using a simple guestbook program. The advantage of the guestbook platform is that it is commonly available on college campuses and can be secured. The application facilitates problem-based learning and other active-learning goals in an undergraduate seminar in environmental law. This report provides an example of the application and reviews the programming necessary to accomplish the learning goals.
- ItemPublic Support for Land Preferences: Measuring Relative Preferences in Delaware(Department of Food and Resource Economics, 2002-02) Duke, Joshua M.; Ilvento, Thomas W.; Hyde, Rhonda A.Public preferences for nonmarket services of preserved land in Delaware are measured using two survey techniques. The results of a conjoint experiment, using a sample of 199 Delawareans, suggest that the environmental and agricultural attributes of preserved land are most important to the residents. The conjoint results also suggest that these services are of substantial value to Delawareans; at the margin, at least, agricultural and environmental preserved land provide net benefits to the public. The analytic hierarchy process is used to assess separate survey results from 129 Delawareans. The results provide specific weights on the relative importance of attributes and qualities of preserved land, which in large part replicate and reinforce the results of the conjoint experiment. Overall, Delawareans seem to be most concerned with keeping farming as a way of life, having access to locally grown agricultural commodities, protecting water quality, and preserving rural character.
- ItemLand Use Issues in Delaware Agriculture(Department of Applied Economics and Statistics, University of Delaware, Newark, DE., 2002-04) Duke, Joshua M.; Mackenzie, John; Ilvento, Thomas W.Can Delaware’s agriculture coexist (and prosper) in the face of competing land uses over the next twenty years? We believe that maintaining Delaware’s agriculture as a viable land-use alternative depends on the success in addressing three critical challenges. First, will residential, commercial, and industrial land uses be forced to bear the full costs that their land-use decisions visit on Delaware agriculture? Alternatively, will agriculture be fully compensated for its contribution to Delaware’s economy and quality of life? An associated, second challenge, is whether state, county, and local governments will institute incentive-based policies to achieve socially desirable land-use outcomes? It is particularly important that there exist policies to protect and to promote diverse land uses within all three counties. Finally, will spatial land-use patterns evolve, which ensure that agriculture maintains the critical masses necessary for the industry’s economic viability and which insulate producers from the complaints and threats of nonagricultural neighbors? This paper expands on these three challenges and then reviews data on trends in agricultural land use to draw conclusions.
- ItemStatLab Annual Report, Spring 2002(Food and Resource Economics Department, 2002-06) Rejto, Lidia; Cho, Seoae; Ilvento, Thomas W.
- ItemFarm Sector of Delaware Agriculture: Changes from 1982 - 1997(Department of Food and Resource Economics, 2002-09) Hastings, Steven E.; Maher, Sharon E.; Acuff, Peter Z.Agriculture contains a vast array of economic activities to produce and provide food, fiber and related products and services. These economic activities can be divided into three sectors: the farm sector, agribusiness and the public sector. Using data from the 1982 and 1997 Censuses of Agriculture, this bulletin documents changes in the farm sector of Delaware agriculture over the 1982 - 1997 time period. It is an update to the Agricultural Experiment Station Bulletin #503, The Farm Sector of Delaware Agriculture: Trends from 1982 – 1992 (Tytus, Hastings and Cole, 1995). Overall, the analysis finds that the farm sector of Delaware agriculture continues to change. Reasons for the change remain the same as they have been for several decades: continued population growth, emerging technologies, evolving and waning demand for agricultural products, fluctuating domestic and international markets, changing consumer preferences, economic conditions both locally and nationally, increasing environmental concerns and growing competition for critical resources, such as land and water. These factors have affected the farm sector of Delaware throughout the last century and will continue to influence in into the 21st century.
- ItemFarmland Preservation Techniques: Identifying New Options(2003-06) Duke, Joshua M.; Lynch, LoriThis report describes over 20 novel techniques for preserving agricultural land. Using a survey of various literatures, phone interviews with program managers, and original policy design, these techniques are explained and categorized. A conceptual framework is offered that distinguishes the various roles governments can assume in order to affect outcomes in agricultural land markets. These roles are regulatory, incentive-based, and governmental participatory. Also, a fourth category of hybrid techniques are presented.
- ItemStatLab Annual Report, 2002-2003 Academic Year(2003-08) Rejto, Lidia; Ilvento, Thomas W.; Cai, Xiangrong; Nedanov, Pavel; Xu, YihuanThe purpose of this report is to briefly describe the activities of the StatLab during the 2002/2003 academic year. The StatLab (Statistical Laboratory) was first established at the University of Delaware in 1983. In the Spring of 1997, the lab closed its operation. In 2001, the Statistics Program left the Mathematics Department and moved into the Department of Food and Resource Economics. As part of this move the graduate program in statistics was re-established as was the StatLab.
- ItemSupplying Preservation: Landowner Behavior and the Delaware Agricultural Lands Preservation Program(Department of Food and Resource Economics, 2004) Duke, Joshua M.; Ilvento, Thomas W.This report presents the results of a survey of Delaware agricultural landowners about their characteristics, opinions, and behavior regarding participation in the Delaware Agricultural Lands Preservation Program, specifically the PACE and Ag Dist programs. The results demonstrate that participants tend to: • Own larger farms • Be more likely to raise corn, soybeans, and vegetables • Have more decision makers • Be much more likely to be full-time operators • Be more likely to value working outdoors • Be more likely to value ownership to pass land onto children. The results also show that word of mouth is the most common way Delaware landowners learn about the DALP program. Owners’ views about the DALP program were investigated. Key findings include: • Participants and nonparticipants identified preserving land for family as the most attractive aspect of the Ag Dist program • Both groups valued the Ag Dist program for its protection against agricultural nuisance suits and taxes • A majority of PACE participants found that program attractive to relieve pressure from debt, to provide retirement security, and to reinvest in their operations • A minority of Ag Dist participants and nonparticipants were interested in PACE to relieve pressure from debt. Participants had positive experiences with the DALP process. • Large majorities were satisfied with the DALP staff • Large majorities of PACE participants were satisfied with the DALP procedures and outcomes • A large majority of Ag Dist participants were satisfied with DALP procedures • A majority of Ag Dist participants were satisfied with the outcome • A large majority of participants would participate in Ag Dist if they had the chance to do it again • Most PACE participants are using PACE money for investments • Some PACE participants are using PACE money to pay debts.
- ItemReciprocal Educational Exchange Between The University of Delaware and Slovak Agricultural University(Department of Food and Resource Economics, 2005-05) Ilvento, Thomas W.; Duke, Joshua M.
- ItemGauging Support for Innovative Farmland(Department of Food and Resource Economics, 2005-10) Duke, Joshua M.; Lynch, LoriThis report describes the results of interviews and focus groups, gauging support for innovative farmland preservation techniques. Four techniques were selected for assessment from approximately 30 novel techniques identified in previous research: (1) Term conservation easements; (2) Land preservation tontines; (3) Rights of first refusal; and (4) Agricultural conservation pension with purchase of agricultural conservation easements. Data were collected from three types of stakeholder groups, including land preservation program administrators in Delaware and Maryland, Delaware legislators, and Delaware landowners. The results show that these stakeholders believed rights of first refusal was the most promising concept, and the groups identified some specific challenges to effective implementation. Targeting areas to implement the technique and having a dedicated, regular funding source were perceived to be essential. Agricultural conservation pensions were also viewed favorably, although some were skeptical that it could be implemented in practice. Tontines were perceived to be an interesting concept, but confusing, difficult to implement, and needing more work to flesh out details. Term easements were, for the most part, not viewed favorably. Most saw term easements having the fatal shortcoming of impermanent preservation. A fiscal analysis was preformed to demonstrate how additional funding for innovative techniques might complement continued purchase of agricultural conservation easements (PACE) activities. The results show that the conservation pension might preserve more acres than PACE, while rights of first refusal will preserve less, but more threatened, acres. Term easements should preserve many more acres than PACE, albeit temporarily. The land preservation tontine will likely act to increase the value of land maintained in agricultural land use, but will not preserve land in the same manner as the other three techniques. Hence, land preservation tontines might best be viewed as a complement to the other preservation techniques.
- ItemPreserving Farms and Forests in Sussex County, Delaware: Public Value(Department of Applied Economics and Statistics, University of Delaware, Newark, DE., 2007-07) Duke, Joshua M.; Johnston, Robert J.; Campson, Tammy WarnerThis report describes results of the 2005 Delaware Community Land Preservation Survey. This survey was a carefully designed choice experiment, which assessed the amount that Delaware residents would be willing to pay in increased taxes and associated fees to preserve farm or forest land in their local communities. Survey results quantify the value that Delaware residents have for different types of farm and forest preservation. Results indicate that the value of farm and forest preservation can be substantial, and can vary widely depending on the kind of land under consideration, the method used to prevent development, and the risk of future development on unpreserved parcels. This study considers preservation of various farm types in six Sussex County communities. When considering additional preservation in the range of 20 to 200 acres, the average community value per acre of preserving, for example, a poultry farm with the purchase of development rights is $27,707 in total capitalized value.i This value reflects the benefits that residents derive from the preservation of undeveloped land in their communities. Although these non-market public values are substantial, they represent an underestimate of total public value because they do not account for benefits accruing to residents in other communities, nor do they include the (otherwise easily measured) value of farm products. Non-market benefits of farmland preservation are composed mainly of residents’ non-market values for amenities such as recreational access, scenic vistas, and community character. These values are not captured in prices paid for farm and forest land in market transactions. As a result, market prices underestimate the true value of farm and forest to Delaware residents.
- ItemAchieving Cost Effective Conservation: ORES801 Case Studies of Applying Optimization To Protect Endangered Birds, Preserve Agricultural Lands, and Conserve Forested Lands.(Department of Applied Economics and Statistics, University of Delaware, Newark, DE., 2009-07) Messer, Kent D.The three following case studies were developed as research projects of the ORES801 course entitled “Optimization: Models and Methods” taught by Dr. Kent Messer in the Fall of 2007 and 2008. The first case study by Allison Borchers evaluates the cost effectiveness of applying optimization techniques to protect the Red Cockaded Woodpecker at the Camp LeJeune Marine Base in North Carolina. The second case study by Anand Kalambur evaluates the use of optimization in the context of agricultural land protection in Cecil County, Maryland. Finally, the third case study by Stela Stefanova applies optimization to identify cost effective project funding for the United States Department of Agriculture’s Forest Legacy program.
- ItemThe Historical Basis Record for Grain and Soybeans in Delaware: Marketing Years 2007-08 to 2009-10(Department of Applied Economics and Statistics, University of Delaware, Newark, DE., 2010) Sorkin, Eric; German, Carl L.; Toensmeyer, U. C.An executive summary of the Northern and Southern Eastern Shore corn, Soybean, and Wheat basis history can be found in publication RR10-03, entitled “Executive Summary of the Historical Basis Record for Grain and Soybeans: Marketing Years 2007/08 to 2009/10.”
- ItemAchieving Cost Effective Conservation: ORES801 Case Studies of Optimization Application to the Department of Defense’s Readiness and Environmental Protection Initiative.(Department of Applied Economics and Statistics, University of Delaware, Newark, DE., 2011-04) Messer, Kent D.The following case studies were developed as research projects of the ORES801 course entitled “Optimization: Models and Methods” taught by Dr. Kent Messer at the University of Delaware in the Fall of 2010.
- ItemMinimizing cost for Municipal residential solid waste collection in City of Newark using Goal Programming & GIS tools.(Department of Applied Economics and Statistics, University of Delaware, Newark, DE., 2011-09) Messer, Kent D.The following case studies were developed as research projects of the ORES801 course entitled “Optimization: Models and Methods” taught by Dr. Kent Messer at the University of Delaware in the Fall of 2010.
- ItemMaximizing Benefits for Women in Delaware: Improving Project Selection Using Optimization Techniques.(Department of Applied Economics and Statistics, University of Delaware, Newark, DE., 2012-03) Messer, Kent D.Non-profit organizations need to use scarce resources efficiently. When it comes to helping Delaware women in need, the two most commonly used conservation methods under-achieve this goal. The Rank-Based method, which picks those projects with the highest benefits but ignores their costs, is the current method used by most non-profits but it always brings minimal total benefits. The Binary Linear Programming method, which picks projects to maximize total benefits while ignoring individual project’s desirability, leads to maximal total benefits but to the detriment of the average projects’ benefits. This paper distinguishes itself from most literature then by showing that optimization can benefit non-profits through tailoring the Rank-Based and Binary Linear Programming methods into a user-friendly, more efficient Hybrid-BLP method. This Hybrid-BLP method leads to a 140% improvement in the number of projects and 112% improvement in total benefits from the Rank-Based method.
- ItemIncorporating Climate Change with Conservation Planning: a Case Study for Tidal Marsh Bird Conservation in Delaware, USA.(Department of Applied Economics and Statistics, University of Delaware, Newark, DE., 2013-11) Messer, Kent D.Northeastern USA tidal marshes provide critical ecological services, including carbon sequestration, water filtration, storm protection, erosion control, and wildlife habitat. Regardless of the services provided, salt marshes have been filled, drained, and degraded since European settlement and the unique wildlife dependent on these ecosystems requires immediate conservation action. Furthermore, global sea level rise has become the foremost cause of contemporary and future marsh loss. Sea levels have risen ~2 mm/year over the last century and predicted marsh losses due to sea level rise are estimated to be 0.5–1.5%/year. Increases in marsh flooding from sea level rise creates a real and immediate challenge to tidal marsh bird persistence and uncertainties surrounding sea level rise must be integrated into conservation decisions to have smart and proactive conservation planning. Decisions about how to allocate limited conservation funding are often subjective and lack quantitative and repeatable methodologies. To assist with the prioritization of salt marsh habitat, we tested two quantitative methods (benefit targeting and binary linear programming optimization), to determine the best combination of unprotected tidal marsh parcels that would yield the greatest conservation benefit. We used three budget level scenarios, $10M, $15M, and $20M to develop budget specific parcel portfolios based on benefit targeting and optimization, and used tidal marsh obligate breeding bird density as our conservation target. We used three sea level rise scenarios (0.5m, 1.0m, 1.5m) to estimate the land cover types that would remain within each selected parcel. The optimization method selected more parcels, protected more marsh area, and conserved more tidal marsh obligate birds, than the more traditional benefit targeting method. Total marsh area ranged from 7.2–9.6% greater and bird density ranged from 7.3–12.8% greater given the optimization method. When benefit targeting and optimization protected the same number of birds optimization provided a cost savings of $1.75M-$2.9M. All sea level rise scenarios inundated >95% of the wetland area on selected parcels. Agricultural land had the greatest amount of area remaining of any land cover type in all scenarios, ranging from 79.9 ha, 82.0% of total portfolio area ($10M–1.5m scenario), to 648.7 ha, 70.8% of total portfolio area ($20M–0.5m scenario). Optimization models can be used to develop comprehensive strategies that protect marshes with current core tidal marsh bird populations, however, increasing rates of inundation from sea level rise will likely lead to losses of existing wetland areas. The potential future benefits of adjacent agricultural lands to tidal marsh birds through marsh migration should be incorporated into optimization models for more effective conservation planning and spending of limited financial resources.
- ItemReducing Agricultural Water Pollution in Texas: An Application of Linear Optimization(Department of Applied Economics and Statistics, University of Delaware, Newark, DE., 2013-11) Messer, Kent D.Linear optimizations models have been used for many practical purposes throughout the years – maximization and minimization models have proved to be key tools when striving to reach a goal. This case study employs such a model with the goal of maximizing an approximate reduction of pollutant loads from individual parcels per year with the implementation of BMPs throughout Fort Bend, Texas. The motivations for this study are the ever growing levels of Nitrogen, Phosphorus and sediment pollutant levels throughout the San Bernard Watershed, in which Fort Bend belongs. To do this, several BMPs related to livestock pollutant loads are examined and selected to be included in the model. This model will choose BMP and parcel combinations in order to provide maximum potential pollutant reductions for each parcel. As a result we obtained 32 BMP implementation recommendations across 31 parcels for a maximum reduction in pollutant loads of roughly 4.3 million pounds per year. A parameter analysis on the maximum budget concluded that the budget could increase until approximately $6 million where it begins to level off at 65 million pounds of pollutant reduction per year. There are several opportunities to expand this research, including developing a watershed wide model.