alexa Recycling on Semi-subsistence Farms: Household vs. Farm Factors
ISSN: 2375-4397

Journal of Pollution Effects & Control
Open Access

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Research Article

Recycling on Semi-subsistence Farms: Household vs. Farm Factors

Qian Bi1,2*, Zandi Chen1 and Steven Buccola2

1College of Economics and Management, Southwest University, Beibei, Chongqing 400716, China

2Department of Applied Economics, Oregon State University, Corvallis, Oregon 97330, USA

*Corresponding Author:
Qian Bi
Associate Professor and Research Assistant
College of Economics and Management, Southwest University
Beibei, Chongqing 400716, China
Tel: +13708326746
E-mail: [email protected]

Received April 21, 2016; Accepted May 27, 2016; Published May 31, 2016

Citation: Bi Q, Chen Z, Buccola S (2016) Recycling on Semi-subsistence Farms: Household vs. Farm Factors. J Pollut Eff Cont 4:166. doi:10.4172/2375-4397.1000166

Copyright: © 2016 Bi Q, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.



As with food production, waste management on semi-subsistent farms is a joint outcome of household-specific and farm-specific resources. It is useful therefore to analyze waste-disposal decisions with this jointness in mind. We do so here with a sample of Chinese farms. Attention is given to five distinct types of waste: packaging materials, manure, wastewater, plastic mulch, and straw. We find farm recycling to intensify as household cash income, farm manager’s age and education, and farm workforce size expand. Recycling declines however as the number of dependents and farm cultivable area enlarge. Put differently, waste management improves as the family’s labor and capital resources grow, but deteriorate if landholdings expand while capital and labor resources do not. The small family farm’s recycling behavior, in short, appears to be entirely rational. Specifically household and specifically farm factors are each important to the capital and labor mix that promotes recycling. In the aggregate, a one-percent variation in the principal household factors induces an average 0.35 percent change in recycling activity, while a one-percent variation in the principal farm factors induces an average 0.18 percent change. Assuming continued economic development, we find reason to be moderately optimistic about the future of small-farm waste disposal.


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