Climate Change and Water Governance in an Era of HI-Tech Irrigation

Wednesday 19 and Thursday 20 February, 2020

This event has passed


Sydney Law School, Law Lounge, Level 1, New Law Building Annex (F10A), Eastern Avenue, University of Sydney



Australian Centre for Climate and Environmental Law and the Environmental Defenders Office

Improving adaptation, sustainability, transparency and public trust.

Around the world, irrigation efficiency measures are being implemented to combat water scarcity – at a time when climate change is leading to increasingly depleted water resources.  Promoted by both governments and international financial institutions, the assumption is that improved irrigation technologies will result in increased water efficiency, and that ‘saved’ water can be returned to the environment or allocated to other beneficial uses. However, prominent public organisations, such as the Food and Agriculture Organization, and leading international researchers are highlighting growing evidence that ‘hi-tech’ irrigation efficiency measures often result in more intensive on-farm water use and in fact reduce water availability at a Basin scale.

This two-day invitation-only workshop, jointly sponsored by the Sydney Environment Institute, the Australian Centre for Climate and Environmental Law, and the Environmental Defenders Office, will bring together international and domestic experts from a range of disciplines to discuss the implications of irrigation efficiency measures in the context of water scarcity and climate change, the key challenges posed by irrigation efficiency for water governance, climate adaptation and sustainability, and best practices in terms of governance responses. The workshop will provide an important opportunity to discuss the governance frameworks required to balance growing consumptive needs, the need to protect associated ecosystems, improved irrigation technologies and our finite and often overallocated water resources.

This is a closed workshop.