Strong El Nino-Southern Oscillation events and the economics of the international rice market Academic Article uri icon


  • EL Nio-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) events are costly to agriculture in that they contribute to its variability. It is possible that climate change will increase ENSO event frequency and severity. This study investigates the economic consequences of ENSO events for the international rice market, along with the consequences of a possible increase in event severity. Historical data are used to estimate the ENSO impact on rice production, and the resulting parameters are incorporated into a stochastic spatial equilibrium model. Our results indicate that an average El Nio or La Nia event reduces annual welfare in the world rice market by US$741 million or US$2058 million, respectively. The additional welfare loss amounts to US$595 million or US$637 million, respectively, if extreme El Nio or La Nia events take place, and to US$1337 million or US$1392 million, respectively, if the frequencies of extreme events increase. The empirical results also show that an expansion in both trade and storage capacity can mitigate ENSO damage. Inter-Research 2008.

published proceedings


altmetric score

  • 5

author list (cited authors)

  • Chen, C., McCarl, B. A., & Chang, C.

citation count

  • 14

complete list of authors

  • Chen, Chi-Chung||McCarl, Bruce A||Chang, Ching-Cheng

publication date

  • April 2008