7_PP4_SHARP_Graz_presentation_new

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2nd International Conference
Graz
October 10th, 2012
Water allocation and efficient water use in agriculture
Local Council Association – LCA (Malta)
Regional Agency for Rural Development FVG – ERSA (Italy)
Malta – agriculture and irrigation
 Total UAA amounted to 11,453 ha
 Total UAA served by irrigation: 3,498 ha
 annual rain precipitation: 550 mm/year
 agricultural sector water demand: mainly from groundwater (80%)
 treated effluent and rainwater harvesting: marginal importance
most widespread irrigation pattern: borholes that abstract water from
the mean sea level acquifers
 water
requirements for agriculture cannot be met by groundwater
alone but further alternative resources should developed
 need to recover efficiency for water used for irrigation purposes
Region FVG – Facts sheet
Total UAA 227,000 ha
Arable crops
Vineyards
Orchards
Forages
142,000
23,000
1,800
33,000
ha
ha
ha
ha
Region FVG: present challenges
Average annual rain precipitation in the Region FVG: 1,500 – 2,000 mm
 in FVG total area served by irrigation is ca 145,400 ha
...but…
droughts occurred in FVG in 2003, 2006 and 2012
drought occurred in 2006 resulted in overall losses estimated in 51 MEuro
Surface system
20.4% of the served area
Sprinkler system
26.8% of the served area
Increasing efficiency
If the rate of utilization of the system components
improvement can be achieved
cannot change, no
No flexible system: higher rate in a given component = higher consumption
of the whole system
Flexible system: higher rate of utilization of a component
can be
compensated by a lower rate applied to another component, same amount
of available water can be allocated more efficiently
C-1
C-2
Fixed utilization rate,
no
flexibility,
no
increase in efficiency
C-1
C-2
C-3
C-3
C-4
C-4
Higher rate in C-1 is
generated by a lower
rate in C-2 and C-4.
Increase in efficiency
through reallocation
of
the
resources
among
the
components
How to increase efficiency
At which level we could act in order to increase the system
efficiency?
Irrigation
technique
Expert system (ICT)
Planning: works,
investments, crop
systems
Farms awareness
on water issues
ICT at higher
hierarchical level
Water
Governance
Increasing efficiency - 1
Irrigation
technique
Different irrigation techniques exhibit different water consumption, hence
different efficiency for water use:




Surface system (SU)
Sprinkler system (SP)
Drip system
Other systems
Theoretical average
water consumption
 “Surface technique”, SU:
 “Sprinkler technique”, SP:
 Potential savings estimation:
2.2 l/(s*ha)
0.9 l/(s*ha)
1.3 l/(s*ha)
Increasing efficiency - 2
Costs borne for water consumed, changing
supply pattern and fees applied

acting on the water pricing: «Flat rate» vs.
«Binomial fee»

water pricing and water supply: from
«scheduled» towards «on demand» pattern

advantages for the farms pursuing water
savings
Guided irrigation

role of advisory services: enhancement in
cultivation techniques

information on plant-soil water balance, farms
are advised on «when» and how much to
irrigate, via SMS or through Internet web
services
Farms awareness
on water issues
Increasing efficiency - 3
Soil-Plant water balance data from
sample areas integrated by an
expert system (ES)
Devices and apparatus of the
water network coordinated by the
outputs generated by the ES
The ES coordinates irrigation
operations, water inflow of the
system results optimized
Flow-meters of
an irrigation
district can be switched on/off and
controlled by the ES under the
supervision
of
the
water
management
team
(remote
control)
Expert system (ICT)
Increasing efficiency - 4
ICT at higher
hierarchical level
ICT and technology can be coupled at a higher hierarchical level, i.e the
whole network sharing common basins or withdrawl points
Data on the observed precipitation, water stored in the basins and weather
forecast information can be integrated and used by a DSS to assist the
irrigation water management of a whole district over the whole season
ES can supervise the pumps and the devices control of the network
according to the indications provided by the DSS/water management
Increasing efficiency - 5
Planning: works,
investments, crop
systems
Critical points of the network hampering the system flexibility should be
identified: investments and works to remove such obstacles
Higher rate of resources utilization in a given area can be achieved through
a reduced utilization of resources in areas showing lower needs: promote
the technological connection among different irrigation districts so as to
increase the overall flexibility of the irrigation system
Crop systems: propose different cultivations or different irrigation systems
in areas with soil having low water capacity (AWC)
Crop systems and new irrigated areas: cost/benefits assessment for new
areas to be served by irrigation:
- works or investments for irrigation are feasible?
- different irrigation techniques to be considered
- areas with soil with low AWC: which crops, which irrigation technique?
Increasing efficiency - 6
Water
Governance
Promote the cooperation and information exchange among Authorities
involved in water management
Coordinate the decisions and the irrigation water management of different
areas so as to take advantage of the flexibility margins
Coordination among the different final users management: industrial, civil
and irrigation
Coordination among Authorities/stakeholders on future works/investments
and plans: where efficiency should be retrieved?
The point of view of the experts
Interview with Ing. Stefano Bongiovanni,
Director of the Association of land reclamation and irrigation consortia FVG
Irrigation techniques (SP vs. SU)
Connections among districts
Connections among Basins/Reservoirs
Water losses and net maintenance works
Land use: which cultivations and crops
Water pricing system
EFFECTIVENESS (0 – 10)
Irrigation techniques and soil AWC
ICT based on water balance at district level
ICT and whole network water flow control
Advisory service for farmers
Coordination among planners
Remove obst. and critical points in the system
FEASIBILITY (0 – 5)
ICT and water balance inform. for farmers
Transferability of the solutions
Experiences or solutions pursued in a certain region cannot be simply
exported to another
Keep in mind: different rules, different organization and differences in land
use and crops system
Some general remarks can be applied:
 increase the system efficiency through flexibility maximization
 effect of the existing plans on water management optimisation
 ICT potential in water management for irrigation purposes
 coordination among water management authorities
 increase the farmers awareness on the cost of water and the marginal
utility of the irrigation interventions
 role of farm advisory services
Thank you for your attention
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