World Water Day
World Water Day, held on 22 March every year since 1993, focuses on the importance of freshwater. It celebrates water and raises awareness of the 2,2 billion people living without access to safe water. It is about acting to tackle the global water crisis.
Almost all of the liquid freshwater in the world is groundwater.
Asia and the Pacific region, has the lowest per capita water availability in the world, with groundwater use in the region predicted to increase 30% by 2050.
In North America and Europe, nitrates and pesticides represent a big threat to groundwater quality: 20% of European Union (EU) groundwater bodies exceeds EU standards on good water quality due to agricultural pollution.
Water is a critical input for agricultural production and plays an important role in food security. Irrigated agriculture represents 20% of the total cultivated land and contributes 40% of the total food produced worldwide. Irrigated agriculture is at least twice as productive per unit of land as rainfed agriculture, allowing for more production intensification and crop diversification.
About 40% of all the water used for irrigation comes from aquifers.
Farms around the world account for 70% of all water consumed annually.
40% of this water is lost due to poor irrigation systems, evaporation and poor water management.
Drip irrigation systems can reduce water consumption by up to 80% compared to other irrigation systems and up to 200% compared to traditional irrigation methods. At the same time, converting to drip irrigation can increase crop yields by up to 100% due to the extremely high precision of the method and reduce the overall production cost.