Submitted to: Encyclopedia of Water Science
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: March 11, 2003
Publication Date: August 1, 2003
Citation: HOWELL, T.A. IRRIGATION EFFICIENCY. STEWART, B.A., HOWELL, T.A., EDITORS. MARCEL-DEKKER, INC., NEW YORK, NY. ENCYCLOPEDIA OF WATER SCIENCE. 2003. P. 467-472. Technical Abstract: Irrigation efficiency is a critical measure of irrigation performance in terms of the water needed to irrigate a field, farm, basin, irrigation district, or an entire watershed. The value of irrigation efficiency and its definition are important to the societal views of irrigated agriculture and its benefit in supplying the high quality, abundant food supply needed to meet our growing world's population. "Irrigation efficiency" is a basic engineering term used in irrigation science to characterize irrigation performance, evaluate irrigation water use, and to promote better or improved use of water resources, particularly those used in agriculture and turf/landscape management. Irrigation efficiency is defined in terms of A) the irrigation system performance, B) the uniformity of the water application, and C) the response of the crop to irrigation. Each of these irrigation efficiency measures is interrelated and will vary with scale and time.