University of Twente Student Theses


Marginal economic value of water in crop production

Hailu, Fitsum Samuel (2017) Marginal economic value of water in crop production.

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Abstract:This study explores the effect of two types of management practices on the average and marginal water productivities. The management practices are three irrigation techniques (furrow, sprinkler, and drip irrigation) and two muching practices (no mulching and organic mulching). A case for an arid environment around Tunis with sandy loam soil for two crop types (wheat and maize) was considered. The AquaCrop model was used to simulate the soil-water-balance and crop yield. A comparison was made on how changing the management practices affect the crop yield and irigation requirement,which ultimately also affect the average and marginal water productivities. For all the management practices implemented, the maximum crop yield attained remained the same but they all achieved this maximum with different irrigation requirement. Drip irrigation required the least amount followed by furrow and sprinkler irrigation, respectively. Moreover, the maximum average water productivity is also the highest for drup irrigation and it is also reached with the least amount of water. However, for the marginal water productivity, switching between management practices did not affect the maximum value but the volume of wataer required to attain this maximum was also the least in the case of drip irrigation. The results obtained apply for bothe crops (wheat and maize). The only difference is the magnitudes of values but the shapes of the production and productivity curves are similar for both crops. In addition, by partially satisfying the crop's evaporative requirement we found out it is possible to save considerable amount of water with no reduction in the maximum crop yield. Furthermore, when there is scarcity of land or water, we can maximize the crop production using two different approaches. When land is scarce, we make sure we effectively use all the land we have and we irrigate at maximum yield in order to get the most out of the available land. Conversely, when water is scarce, we have to aim for maximum average water productivity as that will result in maximizing our crop production.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:ET: Engineering Technology
Subject:56 civil engineering
Programme:Civil Engineering and Management MSc (60026)
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