Sustainable agriculture

Agri-environmental indicators


Introduction to Agri-Environmental Indicators

To help improve measurement of the environmental performance of agriculture, OECD has established a set of agri-environmental indicators, developed in co-operation with Eurostat and FAO. These indicators inform policy makers and society on the state and trends in agri-environmental conditions, and can provide a valuable aid to policy analysis.



Key points in OECD countries

  • Agriculture uses on average 36% of land and 44% of water resources, with significant effects on the environment.
  • Agricultural nutrient balance surpluses - nitrogen and phosphorous - have decreased since the early 1990s.
  • Pesticides sales decreased by 1.1% per year in the 2000s.
  • Agricultural water withdrawals decreased by 0.5% per year in the 2000s, more rapidly than the average 0.3% yearly reduction of total freshwater withdrawals, while the total irrigated area was reduced by 0.3% per year over the same period.



Indicators and data

The times series primary database used for the OECD Compendium of Agri-environmental Indicators provides cross-country coverage on an annual basis since 1990 (where available):

Access the complete database



Organised by theme

Agricultural production Pesticides Water quality
Agricultural land use Energy consumption Ammonia
Organic farming Biofuels Greenhouse gas
Transgenic crops Soil erosion Methyl Bromide
Nutrients Water resources Biodiversity


Organised by country

  Australia France_small France   Korea Slovenia_small Slovenia
  Austria   Germany  ‌ Luxembourg Spain
  Belgium  ‌ Greece  Mexico_small Mexico  ‌Sweden
  Canada   Hungary   Netherlands Switzerland
 Chile_small Chile   Iceland  New Zealand_small New Zealand Turkey
 ‌ Czech Republic  ‌ Ireland   Norway United Kingdom
  Denmark   Israel   Poland United States
 ‌ Estonia   Italy  ‌Portugal_smallPortugal  
  Finland   Japan   Slovak Republic  




OECD Compendium of Agri-environmental Indicators

This report provides the latest and most comprehensive data and analysis on the environmental performance of agriculture in OECD countries since 1990. It covers key environmental themes including soil, water, air and biodiversity and looks at recent policy developments in 34 countries.

Read this publication online


Other publications



Related work

Explore more OECD data, analysis and publications related to agri-environmental indicators.

Review other related work.



Contact us

If you have questions about the OECD work on agri-environmental indicators, please contact the OECD Trade & Agriculture Directorate. 


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