Irrigation Management in the Western States, seen from overseas
Irrigation Management in the Western States, seen from overseas.
by Fandi P. Nurzaman The transformation of the western United States by irrigation offers hope for developing countries looking for models to improve their irrigation system for food security or agricultural prosperity.
Water supply infrastructure currently delivers waters for about 40 million acres of irrigated land (74% nationwide) across arid regions in the Western.
Replicating the same irrigation systems from the Western States would be impossible, but how irrigation institutions and financing mechanisms were developed to adapt some challenges in the past could still be useful practices.
At least since the 7th century, vast networks of canals were used by the Hohokam people in central Arizona for agricultural irrigation for the highest population density in the prehistoric of American Southwest.
The construction of complex and expansive irrigation systems, along with the introduction of water governance in those systems, became one of the most significant accomplishments of the Spanish Colonial period in the American Southwest.
Expansion of irrigation in the western states also was supported by the transformation of institutions that deliver water and operate irrigation infrastructures.
As the population and concern for environment and sustainability grow, managing irrigation systems in the Western States becomes more challenging.
These , either for recreation or the environment, will increase competition for water and make irrigation water more vulnerable to water shortage, a perennial risk in the American West.
Western US farmers also have faced increasing discontinuance of irrigation due to inability to get irrigation water or economic driven factors such as rising costs for irrigation water.