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Farmland irrigation can be energy-intensive.
Agriculture and irrigation consume 70% of the world's freshwater resources. And inefficient irrigation is a source of carbon emissions. That's because pumping and distributing water requires energy, releasing emissions in the process. Particularly inefficient and detrimental is "flood" or "basin" irrigation, which submerges fields to water crops. This irrigation method remains the most common approach in many parts of the world, but can cause soil erosion and water depletion by diverting it from rivers and aquifers.
Efficient irrigation is the solution.
The irrigation methods that can make irrigation more efficient are well-known. Drip irrigation achieves 90% application efficiency, and sprinkler irrigates gets up to 70% precision. Project Drawdown estimates that if 286.5 million hectares of farmland worldwide can be irrigated using these methods (only 53.8 million hectares were watered by drip and sprinkler irrigation in 2018), they can save 68 billion gallons of water and 2.07 gigatons of CO2 emissions by 2050.
We need to do it fast.
To reduce emissions attributable to farm irrigation, we need the companies that make efficient irrigation solutions to scale as fast as possible.
Here are the publicly traded companies that are making that happen. This list represents all of the irrigation efficiency stocks that make more revenue from Drawdown solutions than from fossil fuel-dependent business traded on the New York Stock Exchange (except for penny stocks whose share prices were less than $0.50 in our last update).
If you are a Carbon Collective member, you own all of these companies through the Climate Index.
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|Valmont Industries, Inc. (VMI)||
Valmont makes irrigation equipment for efficient water-use and steel and concrete structures for for improved grid flexibility