During the second half of the 20th century, agriculture responded to a twofold increase in the world’s population by more than doubling food production. During the same period, the group of developing countries increased per capita food consumption by 30 percent and nutritional situations improved accordingly. In addition, agriculture continued producing non-food crops, including cotton, rubber, beverage crops and industrial oils. However, while feeding the world and producing a diverse range of commodities in an increasingly productive way, agriculture also confirmed its position as the largest user of water on the globe.
Water lies at the core of sustainable development concerns and its efficient and equitable management is crucial for human survival. Water is essential for all socio-economic development and for maintaining healthy ecosystems. As population increases and development calls for increased allocations of groundwater and surface water for the domestic, agriculture and industrial sectors, the pressure on water resources intensifies, leading to tensions, conflicts among users, and excessive pressure on the environment.
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Water Resources and Their Use in Agriculture in the OIC Member Countries (English)