Proper irrigation alleviates water crisis

VietNamNet Bridge – Proper irrigation, including the use of alternative wetting and drying methods, will help protect crops during the ongoing drought and saline intrusion in Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta.

Water-saving agricultural practices, damage to crops, Vietnam economy, Vietnamnet bridge, English news about Vietnam, Vietnam news, news about Vietnam, English news, Vietnamnet news, latest news on Vietnam, Vietnam

A rice field in Lich Hoi Thuong commune of Soc Trang province dies of saltwater intrusion.

Speaking during a seminar, experts from the regional Research Institute for Climate Change and the German Hanns Seidef Foundation gathered on Friday in southern Can Tho City.

They noted that severe prolonged drought and saline intrusion were endangering large crops in the delta, and they called upon farmers in affected areas to use essential irrigation techniques to minimise the damage to crops.

After discussing the estimated water level needed for specific plants and water-saving procedures, the agriculture scientists suggested a variety of irrigation methods, including the alternate wetting and drying (AWD) technology, which they said Mekong Delta farmers can use to reduce the amount of irrigation water needed in rice fields without decreasing yields.

Institute Deputy Director Le Anh Tuan said irrigation in agriculture was essential, due to the increasingly severe saltwater intrusion. He noted that famers might ensure equal distribution of water for crops to reduce water losses and maintain the fertility of the farm land.

Associate Professor Chau Minh Khoi from Can Tho University’s department of agriculture and applied biology suggested applying the AWD measure as an economical rice cultivation method.

Khoi said this would help save 9.9 to 19 per cent of needed water, adding that it would not affect grain productivity or increase land salinity.

In the region, the ratio of water used in agriculture was over 70 per cent, while in industry and local daily activities it was 22 and 10 per cent, respectively, according to the scientist.

The Mekong Delta is Viet Nam’s rice bowl, an agricultural wonder that churns out 40 per cent of the country’s entire agricultural production from just 10 per cent of its total land mass.

Farming has been the backbone of the country’s economic growth and stability over recent decades and the Mekong Delta is an important factor in its food programme. But climate change is threatening the nation’s agricultural output, as well as all other economic activities in the country.

In the Mekong Delta, floods during the June to November rainy season seem to have become more devastating, while seawater intrusion during the dry months from December to May has worsened.

Water-saving agricultural practices are thus expected to become increasingly adopted by farmers in the region, which is one of the most important rice-producing areas in the world, with typically three yearly irrigated rice crops.

AWD practices are commonly used as a water-saving practices in Asian farming.

When using wetting and drying techniques, fields are managed as irrigated lowland rice, while the top soil layer is allowed to slightly dry before irrigation is again applied.

The number of days under non-flooded soil conditions can vary depending upon plant development stages and the availability of water.

    
related news

Mekong Delta farmers grapple with worst saline intrusion

Water shortage continues in central VN as water supply plants shut down

Water shortage danger imminent in Vietnam

Central region still lacks water as reservoirs are depleted

VNS

Water-saving agricultural practices, damage to crops, Vietnam economy, Vietnamnet bridge, English news about Vietnam, Vietnam news, news about Vietnam, English news, Vietnamnet news, latest news on Vietnam, Vietnam
 
*
*
*
  Send