Impact of Integrated Soil and Water Conservation Program on Crop Production and Income in West Harerghe Zone, Ethiopia
International Journal of Environmental Monitoring and Analysis
Volume 1, Issue 4, August 2013, Pages: 111-120
Received: Jul. 9, 2013; Published: Aug. 20, 2013
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Yenealem Kassa, Department of Rural Development and Agricultural Extension, Haramaya University, Ethiopia
Fekadu Beyene, Department of Rural Development and Agricultural Extension, Haramaya University, Ethiopia
Jema Haji, Department of Agricultural Economics, Haramaya University, Ethiopia
Belaineh Legesse, Department of Agricultural Economics, Haramaya University, Ethiopia
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Land degradation has been identified as one of the most serious problems that threaten the sustainability of agriculture in Ethiopia. In an effort to address these problems, the basic paradigm and approach to soil and water conservation has itself evolved over time. In recent years more holistic and land-scape wide approaches that go beyond resource conservation towards improved land husbandry and water management for beneficial conservation have been promoted using a national guideline known as Community Based Participatory Watershed Development, where its impact is yet to be seen. In this respect, after having worked for many years on the core part of land management practices, some projects realized the need for value adding and natural resources management (NRM)-based income generation at household level. Hence, the major concern of this study was to evaluate the impact of those integrated land management interventions on crop production value per hectare and annual gross income of smallholder farm households in West Harerghe Zone of Oromia National Regional State. To meet this objective a total of 398 sample households, consisting 183 soil and water conservation program and 215 non-program participants, were randomly selected from nine program and nine counterfactual kebeles in three districts (DaroLabu, Messela and Oda Bultum). Descriptive statistics with appropriate statistical tests and propensity score matching (PSM) were used to meet the stated objective. Results of the descriptive statistics showed that before matching there was difference between program and non-program households in terms of sex, education, farming experience, land holding and livestock ownership. Estimates of propensity score matching (PSM) indicate the existence of a positive additional significant crop production value premium of birr 1,510.42 (US$ 80.55) per hectare and annual gross income of birr 4,288.29 (US$ 228.7) for program groups compared to non-program groups. This indicates that on average participant households earned 8.3 percent more crop production value per hectare and 21.2 percent more gross household income than their matches. The independent analysis result of the data also revealed that the value of crop production was fairly higher on moisture stress program kebeles (1,771.35 EB/hectare) than in the high rainfall areas of the program (1,439.28 EB/hectare). Therefore, in agriculture dependent country like Ethiopia, soil and water conservation is crucial in improving the livelihoods of the rural farm households. However, to realize the intended outcomes, agro-ecology specific technologies that are linked with natural resource management based income generating activities should be promoted.
Ethiopia, Soil and Water Conservation, Crop Production, Propensity Score Matching
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Yenealem Kassa, Fekadu Beyene, Jema Haji, Belaineh Legesse, Impact of Integrated Soil and Water Conservation Program on Crop Production and Income in West Harerghe Zone, Ethiopia, International Journal of Environmental Monitoring and Analysis. Vol. 1, No. 4, 2013, pp. 111-120. doi: 10.11648/j.ijema.20130104.11
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