Water and Agriculture

Sustainability, Markets and Policies

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Agriculture is a major user of water and is responsible for much of its pollution. But the agricultural sector faces increasing competition for scarce water supplies from urban and industrial users and, increasingly, to sustain ecosystems.  This conference proceedings explores how both governments and the private sector can expand the role of markets to allocate water used by all sectors and to get agricultural producers to account for the pollution that their sector generates.



Developing Economic Arrangements for Water Resources Management – The Potential of Stakeholder-oriented Water Valuation

As water is increasingly recognised as a scarce resource, the use of economic arrangements for water resources management seems increasingly promising. Experiences show that economic arrangements can contribute to a more efficient use of water resources, but only if specific conditions are met, related to a well-functioning institutional framework and regulations that ensure that the use of economic arrangements is balanced with broader societal objectives. One of the remaining questions is how to replicate the existing cases where economic arrangements are successfully used in water resources management, in other areas where the conditions seem promising. Therefore, this paper reviews three cases in the USA, Ecuador and Australia where economic arrangements have been successfully applied, focusing on the processes that have characterised their evolution. Based on these cases, it is concluded that stakeholder-oriented valuation can offer useful support for the development of economic arrangements for water resources management, and an approach for such stakeholder-oriented water valuation is briefly outlined and illustrated.


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