Download Agricultural Water Management: Proceedings of a Workshop in by National Research Council, Policy and Global Affairs, PDF

By National Research Council, Policy and Global Affairs, Science and Technology for Sustainability Program, Laura Holliday

This file features a number of papers from a workshop---Strengthening Science-Based Decision-Making for Sustainable administration of Scarce Water assets for Agricultural construction, held in Tunisia. members, together with scientists, choice makers, representatives of non-profit companies, and a farmer, got here from the USA and several other international locations in North Africa and the center East. The papers tested constraints to agricultural creation because it pertains to water shortage; targeting 1) the nation of the technology relating to water administration for agricultural reasons within the heart East and North Africa 2) how technology could be utilized to raised deal with present water offers to optimize the household creation of nutrients and fiber. The cross-cutting issues of the workshop have been the weather or rules of science-based choice making, the function of the medical neighborhood in making sure that technological know-how is an essential component of the choice making approach, and how one can enhance communications among scientists and determination makers.

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The challenge here is to design a management regime which serves to protect the water and generate sustainable levels of exploitation in ways that also aid in determining experimentally the properties of the water system and its response to the manipulation of different management variables. It will rarely be true that the ideal experimental regime will be the same as a regime designed to accomplish the management objectives for the aquifer in question–even under uncertainty. The trick, then, is to design a management regime which balances the need for immediate management intervention and the need for scientific information.

The explanation lies with the fact that as populations and economies have grown, the competitive pressures on natural resources have also grown. This has led, in turn, to levels of exploitation which either cannot be sustained or can be sustained only by using management systems which are based upon a clear and unequivocal understanding of how the underlying natural resource systems behave. The fact that there are limits to the resiliency of natural resource systems means that the management of such systems without adequate scientific underpinnings is inherently a high stakes gamble in which the entire system may be lost or its biological and economic productivity severely impaired (Houck, 2003).

FIGURE 2 Major surface water supplies. Western Kansas obtains most of its water from groundwater. The Ogallala aquifer is nearly the sole source of water for the western third of the state. It supports a vast rural agricultural area. 41 Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved. html Nearly all the water use is for irrigation of crops for livestock feed. The groundwater resources for the central and east are some alluviums in general of limited extent along major streams that serve primarily municipal users and some irrigation.

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