La Houille Blanche
Number 1, Février 2003
|Page(s)||86 - 91|
|Published online||01 July 2009|
Irrigation, régulation économique et durabilité
Irrigation, economic regulation and sustainability
Compagnie d'Aménagement des Côteaux de Gascogne, CACG, BP 449, 65004 Tarbes Cedex. Cet article utilise largement le texte et les données rassemblées dans " L'EAU pour la production alimentaire et le développement rural - Vision des acteurs français de l'eau " - AFEID 2001
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The debate on water in France often emphasises the low contribution of Agriculture to the Basin Agencies' budgets. However blatant, this point incites some people to maintain that "making farmers pay for water" would be sufficient to regulate all user conflicts. This assertion ignores the economic realities of irrigated agriculture in France, which today pays for the major part of the water service cost. Is there any other economic activity or industry being charged for water up to 16 % of its turn-over? Yet, that average figure is the true reality of south-west France irrigated agriculture, even after including the compensation payments of the CAP (Common Agricultural Policy). It is on the basis of a clear understanding of this point that the socio-economic and environmental stakes of irrigation can be assessed and that the adapted economic instruments can be devised to release the pressure on water resources : the choice of the water price compared to the water value ('the sustainable cost pricing') and the type of pricing method are two examples of these instruments which are capable of both ensuring the sustainability of assets and giving a better control on the water demand.
© Société Hydrotechnique de France, 2003
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