Growing more food with less water: how can revitalizing Asia's irrigation help?
Aditi Mukherjia, Thierry Faconb, Charlotte de Fraiturec, David Moldena and Colin Chartresa
International Water Management Institute (IWMI), 127 Sunil Mawatha, Pelawatta, Battaramulla, Sri Lanka
Corresponding author. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), Regional Office of the Asia Pacific (RAP), Bangkok International Water Management Institute (IWMI), Ouagadougou Office, Burkina Faso S/c CILSS 03 BP 7049, Ouagadougou 03, Burkina Faso
Asia accounts for 70% of the world's irrigated area and is home to some of the oldest and largest irrigation schemes. While these irrigation schemes played an important role in ensuring food security for billions of people in the past, their current state of affairs leaves much to be desired. This paper takes forward the IWMI–FAO–ADB (Asian Development Bank) recommendation of a five-pronged approach for revitalizing Asia's irrigation and provides a region-specific road map for doing this. The underlying principle of these multiple strategies is the belief that the public institutions at the heart of irrigation management in Asia need to give up comfortable rigidity and engage with individual users' needs and the demands placed by larger societal changes.
Keywords: Central Asia; Groundwater irrigation; Irrigation; Irrigation reforms; Public irrigation systems; South Asia; Southeast Asia; Water and food demand