Assigning Appropriate Irrigation Water Price Based on Probable Reaction of Farmers and Inter-sectoral Effects of the Price (Case Study: Roodast Irrigation District)

Document Type : Complete scientific research article


1 Ph.D. of Agricultural Economic, Senior Expert, Office of Water Consumption Management and Improving Water Productivity, Ministry of Energy, Tehran, Iran

2 Associate Prof., Irrigation Engineering Department, College of Aburaihan, University of Tehran.


Background and objectives: Selection of appropriate irrigation water price could be one of the primary economic measures in demand management of Iran's water resources management conditions. However, imposing any policies in the section would result in inter-sectoral (economic, social, and environmental) consequences. Identification of these consequences helps the water managers and authorities to find the optimum irrigation water price value. To investigate the results of implementing different policies and farmers' reaction to these scenarios, models are required that can help authorities achieve these goals with high confidence. Also, water resources planners believe that simulation of potential responses of farmers to the implementation of different policies can have an active contribution to making more correct decisions. Determination of the supplied water cost and the weighted average value of the economic value of water, to implement the scientific range of appropriate pricing scenarios to assess its inter-sectoral effects, is the main contribution of this study.
Materials and methods: The present study attempts to simulate the agricultural conditions of Roodasht Irrigation District using the economic model for the base year of 2014-2015. Inter-sectoral effects of irrigation water pricing and probable reactions of the farmers are also investigated. With the ranking of the economic, social, and environmental indicators (using a hybrid configuration of AHP and SAW) the optimum water price is obtained.
Results: According to the results, employing the pricing scenarios led to alter the existing cropping pattern of the Roodasht irrigation district, located in Varzaneh city in Esfahan province, by the farmers. In other words, with increasing the irrigation water price, the positive reaction of the farmers (in the form of cropping pattern) has been detected. The analysis is conducted using the Positive Mathematical Programming economic model in Gamz software. However, employing the pricing scenario has been lead to negative impacts on the economic and social indicators, while positive impacts on the environmental index. In another word, under the conditions that the local water authorities impose the increasing water scenario, the farmers' income has decreased from 19.9 to 14.33 M IRR per hectare. Moreover, the water pricing scenario reveals a similar pattern in the social indicator, so that the maximum and minimum values obtained 60.5% and 38.37% respectively for the first and the fifth scenarios. From the environmental viewpoint, by increasing the water price, the water consumption and energy balance criteria respectively show the decreasing and increasing trends.
Conclusion: Summing up the obtained results, with considering the importance degree of the inter-sectoral consequences of the pricing scenario; including economic, social, and environmental; the weighted average value of the entire crops of the existing cropping pattern (1540 Rial per a cubic meter) is selected as the irrigation water price.


1.Aliahmadi, N., Moradi, E., and Hoseini, S.M. 2018. Application of the cost-translog technique for estimating the wheat demand demand function of the Sistan region. J. Water Soil Cons.25: 331-338. (In Persian)
2.Bafkar, A., Farhadi Bansouleh, B. and Boroomandnasab, S. 2017. Optimization of water use in agriculture using the results of a crop growth simulation model (WOFOST) (Case study: Mahidasht-Kuzaran, Kermanshah Province). J. Water Soil Cons. 23: 301-3015. (In Persian)
3.Gallego-Ayala, J. 2012. Selecting irrigation water pricing alternatives using a multi-methodological approach. Mathematical and Computer Modelling 55: 861-883.
4.Gallego-Ayala, J., Gomez-Limon, J., and Arriaza, M. 2011. Irrigation water pricing instruments: a sustainability assessment. Span. J. Agric. Res. 9: 981-999.
5.Ghodousi, H., and Malkeshi, F. 2014. Prioritize strategies for increasing water productivity in irrigation networks using Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP), (Case study: Qazvin Irrigation network). J. Water Soil Cons. 21: 131-152.(In Persian)
6.Gleick, P.H., and Cooley, H.S. 2009. Energy implications of bottled water. Environmental Research Letters, 4: 140-149.
7.Gómez-Limón, J.A., and Sanchez-Fernandez, G. 2010. Empirical evaluation of agricultural sustainability using composite indicators. Ecological economics. 69: 1062-1075.
8.Hashemy, S.M., and Roozbahani, A. 2015. Selecting an appropriate operational method for main irrigation canals within multicriteria decision-making methods. J. Irrig. Drain. Engin. 142: 4015-4028.
9.Jeder, H., Khalifa, A.B., and Sghaier, M. 2014. Economic analysis of water demand in public irrigation systems in Tunisia, using FSSIM model. New Medit 8: 123-141.
10.Latinopoulos, D. 2008. Estimating the potential impacts of irrigation water pricing using multicriteria decision making modelling. An application to Northern Greece. Water Resources Management. 22: 1761-1782.
11.Ministry of Energy. 2015. Report of national synthesis of master water plan. (In Persian)
12.Nazari, M. 2012. Economic effects of climate change on the agricultural section of Iran. Ph.D dissertation in agricultural economics. College of agriculture. University of Tehran.  
13.Shahdany, S.H., Majd, E.A., Firoozfar, A., and Maestre, J. 2016. Improving Operation of a Main Irrigation Canal Suffering from Inflow Fluctuation within a Centralized Model Predictive Control System: Case Study of Roodasht Canal, Iran. J. Irrig. Drain. Engin. 142: 4050-4061.
14.Hezareh, R., Hassani, U., and Sahayn Mehr, S. 2017. The impact assessment of different agricultural sector policies on its productivity indicators in Qazvin plain. Iran Water Res. J. 10: 73-83.(In Persian)
15.Water master planing studies.2013. Ministry of Energy, Pp: 1-92.(In Persian)