Crop water demand

Project

Crop water demand

In this project, simulation of water flows in catchments is done, including soil water and the interaction with agricultural crops. We want to predict the impact of drought, wetness and salinity on agricultural crop yield and find adaptive land use and water management strategies to warrant sustainable food production in delta areas like The Netherlands.

National and regional water authorities develop long-term plans for sustainable water use and safety under changing climate conditions. Effects of changing water availability and measures to reduce drought effects on agriculture are an important issue. The decisions about investments on adaptive measures in The Netherlands are based on analysis supported by the Netherlands Hydrological Instrument NHI. The NHI is based on the best available data and state-of-the-art knowledge and consists of various physical models at appropriate temporal and spatial scales for all parts of the water system in deltaic areas. With the NHI toolbox models are made at national (the Delta model) regional and local scales.

Effects on agricultural production are calculated, roughly as reductions of transpiration (Delta model) and sophisticated with a coupled crop growth model (WOFOST), and water demand is calculated to adapt water management to optimize agricultural production.

Application

  • Simulation of water flows in catchments including soil water and the interaction with agricultural crops
  • Predict the impact of drought, wetness and salinity on agricultural crop yield
  • Find adaptive land use and water management strategies to warrant sustainable food production in delta areas like The Netherlands

Output

  • Hydrological toolbox (NHI)
  • Operational hydrological model for The Netherlands;
  • Predicted impact of climate change, land use changes and water management on agricultural production in in The Netherlands.

Further application possibilities?

The method and toolbox for integral hydrological modeling can be applied in all deltaic areas in the world and can be extended with hill slope processes to be applied in all areas to find (amongst others) climate robust solutions on:

  • Agricultural systems,
  • Land use,
  • Water management,
in order to match water demand and water availability to increase food production.