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Improving Water Productivity to Increase Water Use Efficiency and Agricultural Production - MTF/GLO/253/IHE








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    Raised beds for improving crop water productivity and water efficiency in irrigated dryland agriculture, Egypt 2016
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    Irrigation is crucial for agricultural activities, however if not managed well, it entails high water losses and can be inefficient in its application. The raised bed system is an improved surface irrigation strategy, which enhances water productivity and makes the application of water in irrigated systems more efficient. It can be easily implemented by the farmers themselves. This practice describes how raised bed systems can be used to improve crop water productivity in summer and winter crops.
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    Increasing water productivity for nutrition-sensitive agriculture and improved food security and nutrition 2021
    Good nutrition requires reliable access to safe soil and water for both food production and preparation as well as optimal sanitation and hygiene practices. Yet about one-third of the world’s population currently lives in water-stressed environments. Further, land degradation, water scarcity, flooding and less predictable rainfall patterns due to climate change are expected to undermine the productivity of smallholder farmers and exacerbate growing rates of malnutrition. Achieving Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) 2 (end hunger and all forms of malnutrition), 3 (good health and well-being), 6 (clean water and sanitation) and 15 (life on land) will therefore require interdisciplinary strategies that recognize the interconnections among these goals. FAO and IFAD aim to further these goals by implementing a three-year project, “Increasing water productivity for nutrition-sensitive agriculture and improved food security and nutrition”, in six pilot countries: Mozambique, Rwanda, Niger, Benin, Egypt and Jordan. As outlined in the project flyer, the overall objective of the project is to improve dietary quality and diversity through the agricultural production pathway by strengthening the capacity of smallholder farmers in these settings to adopt sustainable water, soil, and agronomic management practices. That is, the project aims to move beyond the traditional approach of “more nutrition per drop” to a more holistic framework of “more diverse nutrients and better economic prospects per drop”. In the proposed theory of change, implementation of these agricultural practices are anticipated to lead to greater dietary diversity and quality, improvements in health, and expanded livelihoods.
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    Support to The Regional Collaboration Platform of the Water Scarcity Initiative to Increase Water Productivity - TCP/RAB/3602 2020
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    The Near East and North Africa (NENA) region is among the areas worst affected by chronic water shortages and, in coming decades, is likely to be faced by the most severe intensification of water scarcity in history. Per capita fresh water availability has decreased by two-thirds over the last forty years and is forecast to decrease by a further 50 percent by 2050. Demographic growth, a tendency to increase food self-sufficiency to reduce vulnerability to imports, price volatility, expanding urbanization, energy demands and overall socio-economic development, exacerbated by the negative impact of climate change and the degradation of water quality, are the main causes behind this intensification of scarcity. Agriculture, which consumes over 85 percent of available fresh water resources in the region, will most likely have to absorb the bulk of this shock, with major consequences for food security and the rural economy. Countries in the region thus need to plan their water resources allocation strategically and to review their water policies to ensure that the best use is made of the water available. To this end, it is essential to quantify the productivity of water use in agriculture. In response to the growing needs of member countries and to help them cope with this enormous challenge, FAO and partners launched in 2013 the Regional Water Scarcity Initiative in the Near East and North Africa. The first output of the Initiative was a Regional Collaborative Strategy (RCS) on Sustainable Agricultural Water Management. This represents a framework to assist countries in identifying and streamlining policies, governance and practice that can sustainably improve agricultural productivity and food security in the region. The overall aim of the project was to support the RCS by enhancing information and experience exchange in the region, by strengthening countries’ capacities to increase water productivity in selected farming systems, and by establishing the capacity to monitor water productivity via remote sensing (RS). The immediate objectives of the project included an updated architecture of RS-based monitoring systems in the project countries, and a standardized assessment of the water productivity of the major crop systems in each country, followed by an identification of good practices and affordable technologies for the increase of water productivity at farm level.

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