An Economic Analysis of Residue
Management Alternatives to Open-Field Burning of Rice Straw in the Sacramento Valley Air Basin-80


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Project Leader and Principal UC Investigators

B. Delworth Gardner, Giannini Foundation, UC Berkeley


A lot of time was spent on problem definition, literature review, and subsidiary data collection. The practices and costs of various rice straw disposal techniques and potential cropping patterns have been partially analyzed. The estimate of rice acreage by soil types has begun.

The second and final year of this project which ends August 31, 1981, will focus on the following:

  • Complete the work on the costs of growing rice in the Sacramento Valley, assuming alternative methods of rice straw disposal such as incorporation, burning, and collection for off-farm disposal;
  • Complete the budgets showing the costs of growing substitute crops in those areas where soil and water conditions permit;
  • Use a mathematical model to determine the magnitude of the substitution of other crops for rice if straw disposal costs rise because of a ban on burning;
  • Assess the regional and statewide economic impacts from changes in the rice industry that may occur if burning is banned and other straw disposal methods must be found (These impacts will be felt in the transportation, rice processing, trade, and finance sectors of the economy.);
  • Complete the data collection for the .economic feasibility study of utilizing straw for energy production and building material.


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