Water and irrigation management

Agriculture is a major user of water resources and also contributes to water pollution from excess nutrients, pesticides and other pollutants. But the competition for water is increasing and the costs of water pollution can be high. Farming accounts for around 70% of water used in the world today.

Climate change could affect water supply and agriculture through changes in the seasonal timing of rainfall and snow pack melt, as well as higher incidence and severity of floods and droughts.

Sustainable management of water in agriculture is critical to increase agricultural production, ensure water can be shared with other users and maintain the environmental and social benefits of water systems. Agriculture needs therefore to use water in a more efficient way.