Monterey County Agriculture

The field picture above is using a "Central Pivot" irrigation system to water crops, one of the world's most commonly used irrigation systems as it can effectively water a wide area with little necessary equipment. The practice of irrigation has been employed by humans since the earliest days of agriculture, when fields were intentionally flooded or watered by means of dugout canals which allowed for water to be moved further from rivers than the natural flood plain. While technologies have advanced since then, the idea of irrigation is the same- the movement of water from one place to another for use in agriculture, and the implementation of irrigation technologies has allowed previously unusable fields to become arable. However, the booming global population and the degradation of ground water in many areas due to pollution has raised questions about the over commitment of the Earth's water resources and debates about how to more effectively grow crops with less water than has been used in the past.

Photo by Richard Masoner