Water Use Efficiency at the River Basin Scale: Implications for Hydrologic Science and Water Management Policies
Although the classical irrigation efficiency concept is appropriate for irrigation system design and management, it could lead to erroneous conclusions and serious mismanagement of scarce water resources at a larger scale. This is because the classical approach ignores the potential reuses of irrigation return flows. To overcome these limitations, researchers have proposed the concept of water use efficiency at the basin scale, or basin efficiency, which takes into account the potential recycling and reuse of return flows. This paper discusses the implications of this new concept for hydrologic science and water management policies.