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Agriculture is the biggest water user, with irrigation accounting for 70% of global water withdrawals

The industrial and domestic sectors account for the remaining 20% and 10%, respectively, although these figures vary considerably across countries. In most of the world's least developed countries, agriculture accounts for more than 90% of water withdrawals. Rainfed agriculture is the predominant agricultural production system around the world, and its current productivity is, on average, little more than 1/2 the potential obtainable under optimal agricultural management. Without improved efficiencies, agricultural water consumption is expected to increase globally by about 20% by 2050.

Last update:07 Oct 2014