This study analyzed the effects of irrigation modernization on energy savings, cogeneration of electricity and water conservation, using the Algarrobo irrigation community (Spain) as a case study. Traditional surface irrigation systems and modern sprinkler systems occupy 73 and 27% of the irrigated area, respectively. Virtually all the irrigated area is devoted to field crops. Nowadays, farmers are investing on irrigation modernization by switching from surface to sprinkler irrigation because of the lack of labour and the reduction of net incomes as a consequence of reduction in European subsidies, among other factors. In this study, measures for energy savings, cogeneration of electricity and water management were proposed in order to improve the economic productivity of the community.
Key words: Irrigation community, hydraulic turbine, energy savings, renewable energy.
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