Greenhouse Irrigation Technology Transfer in Spain

by Elias Fereres, Council for Scientific Research of, Spain (CSIC), Madrid, Spain,
Francisco Orgaz, Council for Scientific Research of, Spain (CSIC), Madrid, Spain,
Nicolas Castilla, Council for Scientific Research of, Spain (CSIC), Madrid, Spain,
Jose Lopez, Council for Scientific Research of, Spain (CSIC), Madrid, Spain,



Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Irrigation and Drainage: Saving a Threatened Resource—In Search of Solutions

Abstract: In recent years, an intensive horticultural production system using unheated, plastic greenhouses has been widely adopted in the Mediterranean basin. Greenhouses now occupy more than 15,000 ha in the Almeria province of Spain, an area which pioneered in the development of horticulture in the basin but which is presently threatened by water limitations to sustainable production. Limited water availability, groundwater overdraft and sea-water intrusion have led to a moratorium on new developments and have generated widespread interest in improving the efficiency of irrigation water use. Research efforts have concentrated on determining crop water requirements, on irrigation system evaluation and on drip irrigation management. Such efforts generated recommendations that were widely disseminated at the same time that traditional basin irrigation systems were converted to drip. At present, over 90 percent of the area has adopted modern irrigation technology for economic, social, and technical reasons, including capital availability and labor shortages, water scarcity, and technology transfer efforts carried out primarily by the private sector.

Subject Headings: Irrigation | Irrigation systems | Trickle irrigation | Agriculture | Water resources | Irrigation water | Water supply systems | Basins | Groundwater management | Spain | Europe

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