OECD - Israel is a pioneer in the use of water efficiency

Israel's water management

  •   OECD - Israel is a pioneer in the use of water efficiencly

    This month the OECD the WFP and FAO published joint annual report on the state of world agriculture. Unlike the little pessimistic spirit of the report, Israel is a " breath of fresh air"  and positively mentioned in her ability to use water. The report defines Israel as a world leader on irrigation in desert areas. Following is an passage from the report:

    Box 2.5. Water management in Israel
    Agricultural use of water in Israel decreased almost continuously from the mid-1990s to the early 2000s, but subsequently stabilised up to 2008 and is projected to rise by 2025, although at a lower rate than the increase in urban and industrial demand. As a consequence, the share of agriculture in total water use fell from over 70% in 1980 to 57% by 2005, and is projected to decline to 52% by 2025. A further development, induced by government water quota policies, has been the decline in use by agriculture of freshwater resources compared to an increase in the sector’s use of recycled effluent and desalinated water. A notable feature of Israeli agriculture has been its capacity to increase the efficiency of water use in agriculture. Efficiency has been improved in physical (technical) terms of water use per tonne of output (or hectare irrigated).
    As a result of these improvements in agricultural water use efficiency, Israel is now a world leader in the management and technologies related to irrigation in arid environments (World Bank, 2006). The invention and development of drip irrigation in Israel in the 1960s has been the key innovation behind the rise in technical water use efficiency, as well as the shifting to other pressurized irrigation systems (i.e. sprinklers, micro-sprinklers, micro-jets). Flood irrigation is no longer used by farmers.