Regional Environmental Change

, Volume 14, Issue 4, pp 1563–1574 | Cite as

How do soil and water conservation practices influence climate change impacts on potato production? Evidence from eastern Canada

  • Thomas O. Ochuodho
  • Edward Olale
  • Van A. Lantz
  • Jerome Damboise
  • Jean-Louis Daigle
  • Fan-Rui Meng
  • Sheng Li
  • T. Lien Chow
Original Article


We used a stochastic production function method together with a farm-level dataset covering 18 farms over a 23-year period to assess the role that soil and water conservation practices play in affecting the climate change impacts on potato yield in northwestern New Brunswick, Canada. Our analysis accounted for the yield effects of farm inputs, farm technologies, farm-specific factors, seasonal climatic variables, soil and water conservation practices, and a series of interaction terms between soil and water conservation practices and climatic variables. Regression results were used in combination with three climate change scenarios developed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (A2, A1B, B1) and four general circulation model predictions over three 30-year time periods (2011–2040, 2041–2070, and 2071–2100) to estimate a range of potato yield projections over these time periods. Results show that accounting for soil and water conservation practices in climate–yield relationships increased the impacts of climate change on potato yield, with yield increases of up to 38 % by the 2071–2100 period. These findings provide evidence that adoption of soil and water conservation practices can help boost potato production in a changing Canadian climate.


Climatic variables Beneficial management practices Stochastic production function Climate change 



We would like to acknowledge financial support and farm-level data collection from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC). We also thank Daniel McKenney and Kevin Lawrence of the Great Lakes Forestry Centre, Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, for climate data projections. Lastly, we thank the two anonymous reviewers whose comments greatly improved the quality of this paper.

Supplementary material

10113_2014_599_MOESM1_ESM.docx (37 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 37 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Thomas O. Ochuodho
    • 1
  • Edward Olale
    • 2
  • Van A. Lantz
    • 1
  • Jerome Damboise
    • 3
  • Jean-Louis Daigle
    • 3
  • Fan-Rui Meng
    • 1
  • Sheng Li
    • 4
  • T. Lien Chow
    • 4
  1. 1.Faculty of Forestry and Environmental ManagementUniversity of New BrunswickFrederictonCanada
  2. 2.New Brunswick Department of AgricultureAquaculture and FisheriesFrederictonCanada
  3. 3.Eastern Canada Soil and Water Conservation CentreSaint-André, Grand FallsCanada
  4. 4.Agriculture and Agri-Food CanadaFrederictonCanada

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