Water & Agriculture

Distance Learning starts September 2017


Water shortage and water quality issues are increasingly affecting agricultural production worldwide, and problems will increase with climate change and increasing populations. This module takes a global perspective, and aims to equip students with the ability to fully understand the role of water in agricultural production, and to critically assess existing and future pressures and solutions. After describing the basics of crop-water relationships, the module will address the pressures caused by water shortages and water quality issues, and the interactions between them. Topics covered will include irrigation and drainage, flood prevention, rainwater harvesting, water and livestock, and salinity, and will cover a wide range of agricultural systems. After an assessment of trends, we will look at how existing and future technologies might be used to sustain production, and at how the governance of irrigation systems could play a part.

Key topics will include:

  • Introduction to water and agriculture: transpiration and the role of water in plant growth
  • The role of water in crop yield: water use efficiency, plant breeding for drought resistance
  • Irrigation: major types of irrigation systems
  • Drainage: importance of drainage in sustainable irrigation management
  • Flood prevention: role of tree planting, buffer strips etc.
  • Water and livestock production: animal requirements for health and production
  • Rainwater harvesting and other  small-scale irrigation technologies
  • Soil salinity: extent, causes and effects on plants and cropping systems
  • Irrigation policy: charging for water, access to water

Contributions from Dr Phil Hollington, Dr Katherine Steele, Dr Tim Pagella and others.

To register for this course go to the apply to be a distance learner page

Existing ATP students please email us at Distance Learner Enquiries@aber.ac.uk

To find out about fees go to Fees page

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