Groundwater governance and irrigated agriculture

The paper provides an excellent overview of the global groundwater economy and assesses the opportunities it offers for irrigated agriculture and also the risks it poses for depleting and degrading aquifer systems. A review of the various ‘groundwater governance models’ suggests that while each has merit, none can claim to have achieved the sustainable use of groundwater. The authors emphasize that the socio-ecological and political environment is critical in determining the elements of an appropriate groundwater governance regime.

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