In an attempt to supply food and fiber to a growing population and a developing world, the agricultural sector is challenged to increase productivity, especially in irrigated agriculture that yields more than 45 % of the total world agricultural production. Water demand for irrigation has been steadily increasing during the last decades but at the same time other water users have been competing with agriculture for water resources. In addition, projected climate change, through warmer temperatures and shifting precipitation patterns is expected to decrease water supply and increase water demand in many areas of the world. Consequently, soil productivity could be drastically reduced and thus, crop production.
These trends are of concern, highlighting the role of water and natural resources management and their conservation for the sustainability of irrigated agriculture. How well irrigated agriculture adapts to water scarcity scenarios, particularly by increasing water use efﬁciency and better estimating evapotranspiration, will directly affect the future and sustainability of the sector. Likewise, the use of other water resources such as treated wastewater, both from industrial and domestic origin, is becoming a source for irrigation in areas afflicted by water scarcity, especially in semi-arid and arid regions, where the future of irrigated agriculture is threatened by existing or expected shortage of fresh water and rising concerns of potential hazard for the environment and/or humans.
Within this framework, this session offers an opportunity to present studies related to irrigated agriculture within a multidisciplinary approach taking into account key issues such as:
The efficiency and productivity of water.
Use of marginal water in irrigated agriculture: pros and cons
Understanding and assessing the effects of irrigated agriculture practices on agro-ecosystems with the application of new approaches and techniques.
Promote better agronomic practices in order to maintain soil biodiversity and improve or restore natural ecosystems.
Foresee future alternatives to solve nowadays problems.
What’s about: Water-Energy Nexus in agriculture: Challenges and Opportunities.
Irrigated agriculture and climate change impacts on water management and other techniques.