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In view of the growing water scarcity, particularly in the backdrop of climate change the adoption of water-efficient irrigation systems is becoming indispensable. The study of efficient irrigation systems is lacking in the developing countries like India, which is in turn responsible for the low values of water-use efficiency in agriculture. Therefore in this article, different irrigation systems studied for the developing countries, including the water-efficient and traditional ones, are reappraised. The irrigation systems are assessed on the basis of various factors such as economic parameters, water productivity, water saving and crop yield. Among water-efficient irrigation systems, drip irrigation system (DS) is considered to be the most successful method for water conservation and increased agricultural output. DS not only reduces the cost of supplied water, but also those incurred in the activities such as human labour and other cultivation costs. DS is found suitable for a variety of crops, including cereals, vegetables and cash crops in different regions of the world. Water saving and electricity saving is in the range 40–54% and 26–47% respectively, when DS is compared with the surface irrigation methods. For most of the crops, drip irrigation is found to be the most robust, profitable and cost-effective method of irrigation and could be a possible solution to the growing water shortage in the backdrop of climate change


Climate change, crop yield, irrigation systems, water saving, water-use efficiency.
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