Water solutions to manage risk and variability
Farmers and agricultural land are increasingly vulnerable to water variability and extreme weather events, which in many places climate change is making worse.
Climate variability is already a reality for nearly one billion people who derive livelihoods from rainfed and irrigated farming in developing countries. The more frequent weather extremes that affect them often coincide with shocks in the financial, energy and health spheres – together with hazards like pollution and pest attacks – incurring significant economic losses for individuals and society as a whole.
To help provide farmers with a buffer against water risks and variability – enabling communities to thrive despite stresses and shocks – IWMI´s strategic program on building resilience works with partners to devise research-based solutions:
- Improved water management technologies and practices that match local agricultural conditions, better enabling both men and women in rural communities to cope with uncertainty and increase productivity
- New options in climate-smart agriculture that offer incentives for sustainable use of surface and groundwater, and employ ”big-data” approaches to minimize risk
- Decision-support tools that enable farmers, resource managers and policy makers to accelerate the adoption of improved practices for flood and drought management
This research contributes importantly to the sustainable intensification of agriculture, which is the key to achieving greater food security, improved nutrition and other improvements in rural livelihoods.