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Opportunities and Challenges in Agricultural Water Reuse: Final Report Now Available

Jennifer Martin, (202) 720-8188
September 5, 2008

Agriculture is the single greatest water consumer in the world. In the United States, agriculture controls the largest volumes of water and has a mandated responsibility to manage national and global water resources in a sustainable manner. The World Water Council, seeking to balance water supply with greater demand, suggested improved technologies to provide "new" water for agricultural use, such as the use of recycled water in agriculture.

The use of recycled or reclaimed water in agriculture is a growing practice that may help ensure safe and sustainable food crops. Recycled or reclaimed water is used in several states to irrigate both edible and non-edible crops. The overarching goals of water reuse in agriculture are to provide an adequate supply of high quality water for growers and to ensure food safety.

In locations such as Monterey and Sonoma Counties in California and Orange and Lake Counties in Florida, recycled or reclaimed water is used to grow various kinds of vegetables and irrigate grapevines and citrus groves. Additionally, in many places, recycled or reclaimed water might be the highest quality water available to farmers.

In response to the 2006 Agricultural Water Reuse Conference, CSREES and the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) recently released a final conference report, "Opportunities and Challenges in Agricultural Water Reuse." Explore the links below to learn more about how CSREES and ARS address recycled water issues in agriculture, one of the portfolio expansion areas identified for USDA's Research, Education and Economics mission area's Agricultural Water Security Initiative.

The entire report is available for viewing on screen. Each section is also available in high resolution for printing.

Entire Report 7,851 KB, 72 dpi 5: Critical Issues
in Project Development
6,483 KB,
300 dpi
Front Matter
6,198 KB,
300 dpi
6: Challenges & Opportunities
4,801 KB,
300 dpi
1: Executive Summary
1,298 KB,
300 dpi
7: Bold Steps
for USDA

2,523 KB,
300 dpi
2: Background
5,781 KB,
300 dpi
8: Take Home Message
3,354 KB,
300 dpi
3: Proof of Performance
7,747 KB,
300 dpi
9: References
2,748 KB,
300 dpi
4: Emerging Issues and Regulatory Approaches for Water Reuse
4,488 KB,
300 dpi

1,726 KB,
300 dpi


Recommended Citation: Dobrowolski, J., M. O'Neill, L. Duriancik, and J. Throwe (eds.). 2008. Opportunities and challenges in agricultural water resuse: Final report. USDA-CSREES, 89 p.