A decision support tool for irrigation infrastructure investments

Khan, Shahbaz and Mushtaq, Shahbaz and Chen, Charlie (2010) A decision support tool for irrigation infrastructure investments. Irrigation and Drainage, 59 (4). pp. 404-418. ISSN 1531-0353

Abstract

Increasing water scarcity, climate change and pressure to provide water for environmental flows urge irrigators to be more efficient. In Australia, ongoing water reforms and most recently the National Water Security Plan offer incentives to irrigators to adjust their farming practices by adopting water-saving irrigation infrastructures to match soil, crop and climatic conditions. WaterWorks is a decision support tool to facilitate irrigators to make long- and short-term irrigation infrastructure investment decisions at the farm level. It helps irrigators to improve the economic efficiency, water use efficiency and environmental performance of their farm businesses. WaterWorks has been tested, validated and accepted by the irrigation community and researchers in NSW, Australia. The interface of WaterWorks is user-friendly and flexible. The simulation and optimisation module in WaterWorks provides an opportunity to evaluate infrastructure investment decisions to suit their seasonal or long-term water availability. The sensitivity analysis allows substantiation of the impact of major variables. Net present value, internal rate of return, benefit–cost ratio and payback period are used to analyse the costs and benefits of modern irrigation technology. Application of WaterWorks using a whole farm-level case study indicates its effectiveness in making long- and short-term investment decisions. WaterWorks can be easily integrated into commercial software such as spreadsheets, GIS, real-time data acquisition and control systems to further enhance its usability. WaterWorks can also be used in regional development planning.


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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Permanent restricted access to published verison due to publisher copyright policy.
Depositing User: Ms Julia Ballinger
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Engineering and Surveying - No Department
Date Deposited: 27 Jul 2011 10:07
Last Modified: 03 Jul 2013 00:41
Uncontrolled Keywords: decision support tool; water management; seasonal and long-term investment; optimisation; simulation; benefit–cost analysis; whole farm; water trading; water saving
Fields of Research (FOR2008): 05 Environmental Sciences > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050203 Environmental Education and Extension
14 Economics > 1402 Applied Economics > 140205 Environment and Resource Economics
05 Environmental Sciences > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050209 Natural Resource Management
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO2008): D Environment > 96 Environment > 9609 Land and Water Management > 960905 Farmland, Arable Cropland and Permanent Cropland Water Management
D Environment > 96 Environment > 9609 Land and Water Management > 960913 Water Allocation and Quantification
B Economic Development > 91 Economic Framework > 9104 Management and Productivity > 910499 Management and Productivity not elsewhere classified
D Environment > 96 Environment > 9609 Land and Water Management > 960904 Farmland, Arable Cropland and Permanent Cropland Land Management
Identification Number or DOI: doi: 10.1002/ird.501
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/19267

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