Improving Agricultural Water Usage On California 's Dwindling Water Supply

774 Words Nov 28th, 2016 4 Pages
One important preliminary step to bettering the practices of agricultural water consumption is acknowledging the effect of agricultural water usage on California’s dwindling water supply. Our primary successes in conservation have targeted efforts in conserving water usage in urban areas, but urban water use only accounts for 10% of the water consumed in California. In the long run, California will not benefit from primarily focusing on urban water use conservation and if this is continued then the rate of conservation will not outweigh the rate of decrease in water supply. When looking to improve agricultural water-use efficiency, it is paramount to look into increasing water use efficiency without decreasing the yield. Methods of improving agricultural water-use efficiency start with changing agricultural water management systems by quantifying the efficiency of agricultural water use, improving present irrigation systems, and reducing agricultural water run off.
A direct approach to improving agricultural water use is reevaluating the irrigation systems for improvements and reducing water loss with the implementation of conservation structures such as catch basins and terraces. Irrigation efficiency is defined as “the amount of water used by the plant divided by the total amount of water applied” and also considers losses due to wind, runoff, or percolation (Evans). Different advanced forms of irrigation have the potential to enhance agricultural water use efficiency…

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