Improving Energy Efficiency in Agronomical Systems

Document Type : Review paper


Department of Agriculture, Payame Noor University, Tehran, Iran


Increasing demand for agricultural products and production of resource constraints- especially the limitation of cultivable areas - have made the highest yield per unit area the main goal of agricultural producers. Agriculture is a system exhibiting high energy consumption and production. Since energy has a direct impact on the efficiency of crop production, a sustainable agricultural system needs to be analyzed in terms of its input and output energy to determine the total consumed energy of production per unit area. The difference between input and output energy determines energy efficiency of an agronomical system. Input energy requires being well analyzed to reduce energy consumption and increase energy efficiency. This paper reviews energy efficiency indices based on energy consumption during planting and harvesting. To enhance energy efficiency of agronomical systems, some strategies are discussed in detail, including using high quality seeds, minimum tillage systems, direct seeded rice, weeds control especially in irrigation canals and plant nutrition through agronomical management. Although some agronomical strategies -like complementary irrigation in dry land farming systems- increase input energy, they increase crop yield. However, when output energy, resulting from the rise in crop yield, is higher than input energy, the system energy efficiency improves. Still, some inputs cannot be altered according to regional conditions which are often related to harvest stages operations.


Main Subjects

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