KeywordsArid regions -- Research -- Arizona.
Water resources development -- Research -- Arizona.
Water resources development -- Arizona.
Water-supply -- Arizona.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherWater Resources Research Center, College of Agriculture, University of Arizona (Tucson, AZ)
DescriptionIncludes insert: USGS Fact Sheet 2008-3076, National Water-Quality Assessment Program: Dissolved Solids in Basin-Fill Aquifers and Streams in the Southwestern United States - Executive Summary.
AbstractAgriculture faces a conundrum: populations needing food are increasing and the necessary land and water resources to produce crops are not. What to do? The perplexing situation was addressed recently in an article in the November Scientific American, titled, “Growing Skyscrapers: The Rise of Vertical Farms.” Author Dickson Despommier says an insufficient supply of arable land is available to feed a projected 9.5 million population by 2050. Agricultural practices causing environmental harm contribute to the problem. His solution is to grow food indoors in glass high-rises; he figures that a 30-story structure located on one square block could be as agriculturally productive as 2,400 outdoor acres, with less spoilage. Crops could be grown year-round on these vertical farms under rigorously controlled conditions. He is proposing an agricultural revolution with an urban twist: high-rise vertical farms would be located in urban areas on now vacant lots and multi-story greenhouses constructed on rooftops. Food would be grown using non-mechanized farming techniques and relying on recycled urban wastewater in areas with the greatest demand, thus reducing transportation costs. This means less fossil fuels consumed and less emissions. Urban life would become more sustainable. Techniques for growing crops in-doors — drip irrigation, aeroponics and hydroponics— have been successfully applied throughout the world. Despommier singles out for special notice the 318-acre Eurofresh Farms located in Arizona that produces bountiful and varied crops 12 months a year. He mentions the Southwest with its abundant sunshine as being especially hospitable to vertical farming. He would modify his structures in the region to two or three stories, 50 to 100 yards wide and miles long to maximize natural sunlight for growing and photovoltaics for power. Despommier also describes the paths best not to take. He says that intensive, highly mechanized industrial farming capable of producing a greater yield of genetically-modified crops fertilized by agrochemicals is not the answer. Nor is the further deforestation of land to produce farmland. Both have severe environmental consequences. Despommier summarizes: “Vertical farming could revolutionize how we feed ourselves and the rising population to come.” For another, more here-and-now perspective of Arizona agriculture and its future water needs see above sidebar. It notes a recent CAST issue paper (Council for Agricultural Science and Technology) titled “Water, People, and the Future: Water Availability for Agriculture in the United States.”
CollectionsArizona Water Resource
Showing items related by title, author, creator and subject.
Water Service Organizations in Arizona: A Report to the Arizona Water Commission and the Central Arizona Water Conservation DistrictWater Resources Research Center, University of Arizona; DeCook, K. James; Emel, Jacque L.; Mack, Stephen F.; Bradley, Michael D.; Water Resources Research Center (Water Resources Research Center, University of Arizona (Tucson, AZ), 1978-08)
Yield and Water Use of Barley Cultivars Compared Under an Irrigation Water Gradient at Marana, 1987Ottman, Mike; Ramage, Tom; Brown, Paul; Thacker, Gary; Ottman, Mike (College of Agriculture, University of Arizona (Tucson, AZ), 1987-09)This study was initiated to determine how barley cultivars perform outside the environment for which they were selected. Also, a comparison was made of water use by a one-irrigation barley with water use of a commercial cultivar selected for high yield conditions. Six barley cultivars bred for differing growing conditions (Westbred Gustoe and Westbred Barcott - high input; Arivat and Prato - medium input; and, Seco and 2-22-9 - low input) were compared under 12 water regimes delivered by a line -source sprinkler system. Water use of Seco, a one-irrigation barley, and Westbred Gustoe, a commercial barley, was monitored with a neutron probe. The barley cultivars bred for high, medium, and low input conditions performed best in their respective optimum water levels with the exceptions of Westbred Barcott and Prato. Westbred Barcott (high input) yielded relatively well over all water levels, and Prato (medium input), performed similar to a high input barley. Seco (low input) used slightly less water than Westbred Gustoe (high input), primarily due to its earlier maturity. The water extraction pattern with depth was similar for both cultivars due to the frequent shallow irrigations applied in this study. The water extraction pattern of Seco needs to be investigated under one- irrigation conditions.
The Arizona Water Commission's Central Arizona Project Water Allocation Model SystemBriggs, Philip C.; Arizona Water Commission, Phoenix, Arizona (Arizona-Nevada Academy of Science, 1977-04-16)The purpose and operation of the Central Arizona Project water allocation model system are described, based on a system analysis approach developed over the past 30 years into an interdisciplinary science for the study and resolution of complex technical management problems. The system utilizes mathematical and other simulation models designed for computer operations to effectively solve such problems as the CAP faces including those concerned with social and economic considerations. The model is composed of two major components: (1) a linear program designed to determine the optimal allocation of all sources of water to all demands and, (2) a hydrologic simulator capable of reflecting the impact of distribution alternatives on per-unit cost of delivery. The model, currently being use, has substantially contributed to a greater understanding of water usage potential in Arizona.