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A Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis of Wheat Production Sustainability in the Semi-Arid Environment of Mashhad, Northeastern Iran

Azam Lashkari

,

Masoud Irannezhad

Azam Lashkari 1
Masoud Irannezhad 2


  1. CIMMYT-Henan Collaborative Innovation Center, Henan Agricultural University, Zhengzhou, China. 1

  2. School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Southern University of Science and Technology, Shenzhen, China. 2

Pages: 1-16

DOI: 10.18488/journal.70.2021.81.1.16

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Article History:

Received: 16 October, 2020
Revised: 05 November, 2020
Accepted: 27 November, 2020
Published: 10 December, 2020


Abstract:

Globally, wheat is the most staple food for one-third of the population and provides more daily calories and protein than any other crop. However, its production still poses great social and environmental challenges for humanity. Hence, agricultural sustainability indices are commonly used to evaluate all economic, ecological, and social dimensions of crop production from theory into practice around the world. This assessed agricultural sustainability of irrigated (IWPS) and rainfed (RWPS) wheat production systems in the semi-arid environment of Mashhad (northeastern Iran). Data were obtained from irrigated and rainfed wheat farms in Mashhad for the growing seasons (Oct-May) during 2006-2010. The questionnaire was also designed to collect data from the farmers. A multi-criteria decision analysis (MCDA) was performed to identify the most significant economic, ecological, and social criteria influencing the agricultural sustainability index. The results determined that IWPS is more sustainable than RWPS in Mashhad as the economic viability for IWPS is relatively higher than that for RWPS. However, RWPS has also a high potential to achieve agricultural sustainability in environments without water stress. Finally, face-to-face interviews confirmed that farmers do not invest heavily in RWPS because of its high sensitivity to precipitation, temperature, and soil quality in Mashhad (northeastern Iran).
Contribution/ Originality
This study is one of very few studies which have investigated the agricultural sustainability (in all economic, ecological, and social dimensions) of both irrigated and rainfed wheat production systems in semi-arid environments using a multi-criteria decision analysis.

Keywords:

Agricultural sustainability, Growing season Iran, Irrigated and rainfed wheat, MCDA, Semi-arid environment.

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Funding:

This study received no specific financial support.

Competing Interests:

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

Acknowledgement:

Both authors contributed equally to the conception and design of the study.

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( 87 ) The Effect of Land-Use on Herbaceous Production and Grazing Capacity in the Molopo District of the North West Province, South Africa
( 89 ) Boosting Farm Productivity through Intensification of Soybean Production Technology
( 90 ) Evaluation of the Sustainability Criteria of Forest Management in the Municipality Palma Soriano, Santiago De Cuba Province
( 92 ) Germination Effects of Purposive Bruchid Screening of African Ebony (Dalbergia Melanoxylon) Seeds In the Arid and Semi-Arid Region of South Eastern Kenya
( 93 ) Penman and Thornwait Equations for Estimating Reference Evapotranspiration Under Semi-Arid Environment
( 95 ) Reference Evapotranspiration by Hargreaves and Modified Hargreaves Equations under Semi-Arid Environment
( 97 ) Temporal Rhythms of Dry Tropical Forest Regeneration under Exploration of Granite-Gnaisse Mining in a Semi-Arid Area
( 98 ) Cultivation and Nutritional Quality of Moringa Oleifera Lam. Produced Under Different Substrates in Semi-Arid Region in Northeast Brazil