Vegetables production in Ortosole, Italy
Global
Agriculture
Global
Agriculture

Water

Around 70% of global average freshwater withdrawal is currently used for agriculture. It varies between less than 10% in humid industrialized countries (e.g. Germany) and >90% in arid, low industrialized countries (e.g. Sudan). (FAO Aquastat, 2019)1

Using and managing the world's limited resources efficiently is in society’s best interest. As a leading chemical company and agricultural solutions provider, BASF is committed to the protection of water resources and its responsible and sustainable use.

Water and AgBalance

Water input for the agricultural product can originate from natural precipitation and also, if applied, from artificial irrigation. Moreover, water input is necessary for the dilution of crop protection agents.

Precipitation:  It is assumed, that the total precipitation during the cultivation period is available for the crop and is modeled as rainwater input.

Irrigation:  The consumption of water can be a critical aspect for the sustainability analysis depending on the regional water availability. In the AgBalance® Model, the water consumption for possible irrigation operations can be specified.

Dilution of Plant Protection Products:  Water used for the dilution of crop protection agents is also considered. The water is assumed to be taken from tap water with its corresponding scarcity and deprivation factor.

Impact of Water

The amount of water consumption clearly impacts water scarcity, but also has, if irrigation is applied, an impact on climate change (e.g. fuel consumption for irrigation pumps) and also on Eutrophication (e.g. nitrate leaching from water). 

Water

Technical documentation

1 http://www.fao.org/land-water/en/