Water Conservation in Irrigated Agriculture: Trends and Challenges in the Face of Emerging Demands
AbstractThis report relies on fi ndings from several national surveys and current literature to assess water resource use and conservation measures within the U.S. irrigated crop sector. U.S. agriculture accounts for 80-90 percent of the Nation’s consumptive water use (water lost to the environment by evaporation, crop transpiration, or incorporation into products. Expanding water demands to support population and economic growth, environmental flows (water within wetlands, rivers, and groundwater systems needed to maintain natural ecosystems), and energy-sector growth, combined with Native American water-right claims and supply/demand shifts expected with climate change, will present new challenges for agricultural water use and conservation, particularly for the 17 Western States that account for nearly three-quarters of U.S. irrigated agriculture. Despite technological innovations, at least half of U.S. irrigated cropland acreage is still irrigated with less effi-cient, traditional irrigation application systems. Sustainability of irrigated agriculture will depend partly on whether producers adopt more effi cient irrigation production systems that integrate improved onfarm water management practices with effi-cient irrigation application systems.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service in its series Economic Information Bulletin with number 134692.
Date of creation: 27 Sep 2012
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More information through EDIRC
agricultural water conservation; irrigated agriculture; irrigation effi ciency; water supply and demand; irrigation technologies; water management practices; water conservation policy; Environmental Economics and Policy; Resource /Energy Economics and Policy;
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-AGR-2012-10-20 (Agricultural Economics)
- NEP-ALL-2012-10-20 (All new papers)
- NEP-ENV-2012-10-20 (Environmental Economics)
- NEP-RES-2012-10-20 (Resource Economics)
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