ARE student Jesus Arellano Gonzalez presented his research on climate change and agriculture. This paper demonstrates that the impact of climate change is diﬀerent for rainfed and irrigated agriculture. Using a panel dataset of Maize yields in Mexico, Jesus ﬁnds that rainfed Maize is sensitive to both temperature and precipitation. This sensitivity is weakened in irrigated Maize suggesting that the adoption of irrigation could be an eﬀective tool to reduce not only precipitation uncertainties but also the damaging eﬀects of raising temperatures. When combining the panel estimates of the paper with climate change projections by 2100, Jesus concludes that rainfed Maize yields are expected to decrease by 4.7%-5.5% with temperature increases accounting for about 80% of the loss. Areas with high levels of rural poverty could be among the most aﬀected. If rainfed Maize farmers manage to adapt to climate change in the long run, projected losses could be lowered. However, in the medium run Jesus ﬁnds no compelling evidence of adaptation to climate change. Speciﬁcally, the total amount of land cultivated with Maize under rainfed conditions has not been responsive to raising temperature trends and has been partially responsive to precipitation trends.
Jesus is currently on the job market and this paper is his job market paper. The manuscript is available on his personal website.