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Address water scarcity ‘immediately and boldly’, urges UN agriculture agency chief November 27,2020   |  Source: UN News

The State of Food and Agriculture (SOFA) 2020, the Food and Agriculture Organization’s (FAO) flagship report, noted that available freshwater resources have declined globally by more than 20 per cent per person over the past two decades, underscoring the importance of producing more with less, especially in the agriculture sector – the world’s largest user of water.

“With this report, FAO is sending a strong message: Water shortages and scarcity in agriculture must be addressed immediately and boldly if our pledge to achieve the SDGs [Sustainable Development Goals] is to be taken seriously”, emphasized FAO Director-General QU Dongyu in the foreword of the report.

From investing in water-harvesting and conservation in rainfed areas to rehabilitating and modernizing sustainable irrigation systems in irrigated areas, actions must be combined with best agronomic practices, the report stressed.

These could involve adopting drought-tolerant crop varieties and improving water management tools – including effective water pricing and allocation, such as water rights and quotas – to ensure equitable and sustainable access.

However, effective management strategy must start with water accounting and auditing.

Achieving the internationally agreed SDG


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