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Area under irrigation around the year 2000, as percentage of surface area.

Map description and dataset provided by: a) Institute of Physical Geography, University of Frankfurt/Main, Germany, b) Land and Water Division, Food and Agriculture Organization, Rome, Italy

DescriptionIrrigated Areas

The digital global map of irrigation areas was developed by combining sub-national irrigation statistics and geo-spatial information on the location and extent of irrigation schemes. The map shows the percentage of each 5 arc minute by 5 arc minute cell that was equipped for irrigation around the year 2000. Irrigation statistics for 26 909 sub-national units (e.g. districts, counties, provinces, governorates, river basins), from national census surveys and from reports available at FAO, World Bank and other international organizations, were used to develop the most recent map version 4. In order to distribute irrigated area within the sub-national units, geospatial information on position and extent of irrigated areas was derived by digitizing hundreds of irrigation maps available in reports of FAO, World Bank, irrigation associations or national ministries of agriculture. Additionally, information from several atlases or inventories based on remote sensing available in digital format was utilized.

Interpretation

Agriculture is by far the largest water use at global level, with about 70% of water withdrawal and 90% of water consumption. To model irrigation water requirements at the global scale it is important to know distribution and extent of irrigated areas in the world. The largest contiguous areas of high irrigation density are found in North India and Pakistan along the rivers Ganges and Indus, in the Hai He, Huang He and Yangtze basins in China, along the Nile river in Egypt and Sudan, in the Mississippi-Missouri river basin and in parts of California. Other areas of high irrigation density with regional importance are located along the Snake and Columbia rivers in the northwestern United States, along the western coasts of Mexico and Peru, in central Chile, in the rice growing areas along the border between Brazil and Uruguay, along the Danube and Po rivers in Europe, in the Euphrates-Tigris basin in Iraq and Turkey, the Aral sea basin, the Amu Darya and Syr Darya river basins, the Brahmaputra basin in China and Bangladesh, the Mekong delta in Vietnam, the plain around Bangkok in Thailand, the island of Java (Indonesia) and the Murray-Darling basin in Australia. Smaller irrigation areas are spread across almost all populated parts of the world. The total area equipped for irrigation in map version 4 of the Global Map of Irrigation Areas is 278.8 Mha of which about 68 % is located in Asia, 17 % in America, 9 % in Europe, 5 % in Africa and 1% in Oceania.

Source

The dataset for this map was provided by: Stefan Siebert (a), Petra Döll (a), Jippe Hoogeveen (b), and Karen Frenken (b), a) Institute of Physical Geography, University of Frankfurt/Main, Germany, b) Land and Water Division, Food and Agriculture Organization, Rome, Italy

Background

The data set was developed in the framework of a cooperation between the AQUASTAT Programme of the Land and Water Division of Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and the Johann Wolfgang Goethe Universität, Frankfurt am Main. The objective of the co-operation is to develop global GIS coverage of areas equipped for irrigation and to make it available to users in the international community. The cooperation is ongoing.

Citation

Please cite this map as: "Stefan Siebert, Petra Döll, Sebastian Feick, Jippe Hoogeveen and Karen Frenken (2007). Global Map of Irrigation Areas version 4.0.1. Johann Wolfgang Goethe University, Frankfurt am Main, Germany / Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, R Source: GWSP Digital Water Atlas (2008). Map 31: Irrigated Areas (V1.0). Available online at http://atlas.gwsp.org."

Contact Information

http://www.fao.org/nr/water/aquastat/irrigationmap/index.stm

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