The benefits of water storage to irrigation
Irrigation and water storage has long been touted as a potential for improvements in productivity in dryland East Coast areas. Reports date back to the 1880's discussing the benefits water would bring to farmlands. Currently there is 750,000ha of land irrigated in New Zealand with approximately 400,000ha in Canterbury. The total irrigated area in New Zealand has trebled since 1985. There is currently another 400,000ha of scheme proposals at various levels of development. For growth in irrigated area to continue water is going to have to come from storage as in many areas aquifers and river water availability are fully allocated, thus forcing the need for storage. Agriculture currently contributes 56% of New Zealand's total exports. For New Zealand to maintain and grow the country's standard of living we quite simply have to raise the bar on exports. We have to export more to also rectify our unsustainable balance of payments situation. Our exporting strengths lie in agriculture. The addition of storage to a proposed irrigation scheme in Canterbury covering 60,000ha would create an additional $700 million in export earnings per annum also creating an additional 1600 new jobs additional to that created by the irrigation alone.... [Show full abstract]
Fields of Research079901 Agricultural Hydrology (Drainage, Flooding, Irrigation, Quality, etc.); 140201 Agricultural Economics
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