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Guidelines for calculation of the agriculture water use efficiency for global reporting

The agronomic parameters in the SDG indicator 6.4.1: yield ratio and proportion of rainfed production











Gillet, V. and Biancalani, R. 2022. Guidelines for calculation of the agriculture water use efficiency for global reporting – The agronomic parameters in the SDG indicator 6.4.1: yield ratio and proportion of rainfed production. Rome, FAO. 




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    The global indicator on water-use efficiency tracks to what extent a country’s economic growth is dependent on the use of water resources, and enables policy and decision-makers to target interventions at sectors with high water use and low levels of improved efficiency over time. This indicator addresses the economic component of target 6.4. In this report, you can learn more about the global and country progress on water-use efficiency. More information and methodological guidance can be found at: www.fao.org/sustainable-development-goals/ indicators/641 This report is part of a series that tracks progress towards the various targets set out in SDG 6 using the SDG global indicators. To learn more about water and sanitation in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and the Integrated Monitoring Initiative for SDG 6, visit our website: www.sdg6monitoring.org
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    This report is the presentation of the methodology applied in Italy to spatially disaggregate the computation of the level of water stress from the national to the subnational scale (SDG indicator 6.4.2). Compared to the national assessment, which results in a low level of water stress in the country, the spatial disaggregation of the indicator by the hydrological unit highlighted the presence of basins affected by water stress exceeding 60 per cent (district of the Po river basin). The analysis was performed considering the long-term average of the available fresh water resources calculated on different reference periods (1951-2020, 1961-90, 1991-2020), and this put in evidence the impact of climate change on the level of water stress. This report is part of the series SDG 6.4 MONITORING SUSTAINABLE USE OF WATER RESOURCES PAPERS that collects all the achievements on SDG 6.4. The study was implemented by the Italian Institute for Environmental Protection and Research (ISPRA), responsible for the model and data used to assess the total renewable freshwater resources, and the Italian National Institute of Statistics (ISTAT), which has provided the methodology and the official statistics related to water withdrawals by economic sector (Agriculture, Services, and Industry). The study is the outcome of an agreement between FAO and ISPRA under the Integrated Monitoring Initiative for SDG 6 (IMI-SDG6), designed to produce a map of Italy showing the SDG indicator 6.4.2 “Level of water stress: freshwater withdrawal as a proportion of available freshwater resources” disaggregated at river basin district level. To learn more about the Integrated Monitoring Initiative for SDG 6, visit www.sdg6monitoring.org.
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    This publication is intended to provide guidance in determining crop water requirements and their application in planning, design and operation of irrigation projects. Part 1.1 presents suggested methods to derive crop water requirements. The use of four well-known methods for determining such requirements is defined to obtain reference crop evapotranspiration (ETo), which denotes the level of evapotranspiration for different climatic conditions. These methods are the Bla.ney- Criddle, t he Radiation, the Penman and Pan Evaporation methods, each requiring a different set of climatic data. To derive the evapotranspiration for a specific crop, relationships between crop evapotran.spiration (ETcrop) and reference crop evapotranspiration (ETo) are given in Part I . 2 for different crops , stages of growth, length of growing season and prevailing climatic conditions. The effect of local conditions on crop water requirements is given in Part 1.3; this includes local variat ion in climate, advection, soil water availability and agronomic and irrigation methods and practices . Calculation procedures are presented together with examples. A detailed discussion on selection and calibration of the preSented methodologies together with the data sources is given in Appendix II. A computer programme on applying the different methods is given in Appendix III. Part 11 discusses the application of crop water requirements data in irrigationproject planning, design and operation.. Part II. 1 deals v.rith deriving the field water balance, which in turn forms the basis for predicting season.al and peak irrigation supplies for general planning purposes. Attention is given to irrigation efficiency and water requirements for cultural practices and leaching of salts. In Part 11.2 methods are presented to arrive at field and scheme supply schedules with emphasis towards the field water balance and field irrigation management. Criteria are given for op erating the canal system using different methods of water delivery, and for subsequent design parameters of the system. Suggestions are made in Part 11.3 on refinement of field and project supply schedules once the project is in operation. The presented guidelines are based on measured data and experience obtained covering a wide range of conditions. Local practical, technical, social a.nd economic considerations will, however, affect the planning criteria selected. Therefore cauti on and a critical attitude should still be taken when applyin.g the presented methodology.

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