Impact of Technology and Policy on Sustainable Agricultural Water Use and Food Security

  • Mahbub AlamEmail author
  • Greg Kruger
  • Sharon B. Megdal
  • David Songstad
Part of the Biotechnology in Agriculture and Forestry book series (AGRICULTURE, volume 67)


Water, soil, air, and sunlight are integrated components of food production. However, water is unique in that humans have been able to manipulate the supply of water, particularly for agrarian applications. A variety of technological innovations in plant breeding, biotech traits, and agronomic improvements have resulted in improved water use efficiency or engineering breakthroughs that result in increased sustainable irrigation techniques. Common to these innovations is investment in science to discover the solutions to the challenge of feeding the estimated 9.5 billion people expected to be living by the year 2050. Water sustainability will be an important factor that has to be addressed, not just in the USA, but globally. As water availability becomes an even more limiting factor, water legislation, regulation, and policy will play an ever-more important role. Managing the water requirements for food production, urban, recreational, and energy and industrial uses will require policy decisions at various levels of government.


Agricultural Water Irrigation Schedule Irrigation Efficiency Corn Belt Subsurface Drip Irrigation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



The authors wish to thank Mark Cooper and John Soper of Pioneer Hi-Bred and Christopher Fullerton of The University of Arizona for their contributions to this manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mahbub Alam
    • 1
    Email author
  • Greg Kruger
    • 2
  • Sharon B. Megdal
    • 3
  • David Songstad
    • 4
  1. 1.Emeritus Biological and Agricultural EngineeringKansas State UniversityManhattanUSA
  2. 2.West Central Research and Extension CenterUniversity of NebraskaNorth PlatteUSA
  3. 3.Water Resources Research CenterUniversity of ArizonaTucsonUSA
  4. 4.Research/Cell BiologyCibus LLCSan DiegoUSA

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