Improving On-farm Water Management - A Never-ending Challenge

Peter Wolff, Thomas-Manuel Stein


Most on-farm water management (OFWM) problems are not new.They have been a threat to agriculture in many countries around the globe in the last few decades. However, these problems have now grown larger and there is increasing public demand for the development and management of land and water to be ecologically sustainable as well as economic.As there is a close interrelationship between land use and water resources, farmers need to be aware of this interrelationship and adjust their OFWM e.orts in order to address the issues.In their management e.orts, they need to consider both the on-site and the o.-site e.ects.
This paper highlights holistic approaches in water management as being indispensable in the future.Present and future water-utilisation problems can only be solved on the basis of an intersectoral participatory approach to water management conducted at the level of the respective catchment area.In the context of this approach, farmers need to realise that they are part of an integral whole.
The paper also lists a range of present and future challenges facing farmers, extensionists, researchers, relation to OFWM e.orts.Among the challenges are: the e.ects of the increasing competition for freshwater resources; the increasing in.uence of non-agricultural factors on farmers’ land use decisions; the fragmentation of the labour process and its e.ects on farming skills; the information requirements of farmers; the participatory dissemination of information on OFWM; the process of changing permanently the agrarian structure; and the establishment of criteria of good and bad OFWM.


on-farm water management; problems of on-farm water management; challenges of modern on-farm water management

Full Text:


Copyright (c)