Modeling climate change impacts on the US agricultural exports
Climate change is expected to have substantial effects on agricultural productivity worldwide. However, these impacts will differ across commodities, locations and time periods. As a result, landowners will see changes in relative returns that are likely to induce modifications in production practices and land allocation. In addition, regional variations in impacts can alter relative competitiveness across countries and lead to adjustments in international trade patterns. Thus in climate change impact studies it is likely useful to account for worldwide productivity effects. In this study, we investigate the implications of considering rest of world climate impacts on projections of the US agricultural exports. We chose to focus on the US because it is one of the largest agricultural exporters. To conduct our analyses, we consider four alternative climate scenarios, both with and without rest of world climate change impacts. Our results show that considering/ignoring rest of world climate impacts causes significant changes in the US production and exports projections. Thus we feel climate change impact studies should account not only for climate impacts in the country of focus but also on productivity in the rest of the world in order to capture effects on commodity markets and trade potential.