This publication arose from a perceived gap in the literature on the specific problems of raw water allocation for agriculture as distinct from other users. The concern is that pressures on agriculture to reduce its otherwise successful capture of raw water will need transparent methods of negotiation. There is also considerable confusion within the agricultural sector on the basic economics of natural resource allocation and the implications of water valuation and the relationship to water pricing.
The publication is primarily targeted at agriculture policy makers and managers, prompting them to review the economic basis for agricultural water management and offer an approach to water resource valuation that can be accepted by competing sectors and environmental services.
Many books on the subject of water valuation attempt to cover all aspects of water use. This publication confines itself to a consideration of agricultural use simply because this use will continue to dominate global water withdrawals.