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16 July, 2018 00:00 00 AM
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Exploring new irrigation technology

Rice scientists are of the opinion that adoption of Alternate Drying and Wetting (AWD) irrigation technology during Boro rice farming can save minimum 30 per cent irrigation water substantially reducing pressure on underground water. They suggested large-scale adoption of the simplest and effective technology to cope with scarcity of irrigation water. Lifting of underground water must be reduced to the minimum as future of agriculture depends on availability of water amid a formidable threat of climate change when there is alternative to keeping food production rate increasing.

There should be nature-based solutions for water challenges in the country.  Emphasis should be given on the need of integrated solution in water development plan considering political, social and local realities. Many rivers and water bodies of the country have dried up. The number of population is increasing in the country, particularly in Dhaka city. Water consumption is also increasing manifold. Construction of scores of high-rise buildings in recent times has also taken its toll on the groundwater levels.  The capital’s groundwater levels are dropping from one to three metres every year because of over exploitation of the aquifer by deep tube-wells and absence of proper recharging.

The over exploitation of underground water may lead to a catastrophic situation. In the circumstances, the relevant authorities should come up with pragmatic measures to address the situation. Dependence on underground water should be lessened by increasing the use of surface water and rainwater harvesting. Rainwater harvesting can address the problem of safe drinking water to some extent. The country experiences sufficient rain during monsoon. Rainwater can be collected and preserved by using modern technology.

With the support of development agencies, if water preservation using rudimentary techniques is taught to farmers then dry periods need not be a matter of worry. The government can also go for constructing large reservoirs in dry areas to store water to be used during prolonged summer periods. Bangladesh has already introduced several varieties of rice that are flood resistant. It’s time drought resisting crops are introduced to farmers.

New technology can only develop when research is given priority. The best incentive will be to offer financial incentives together with national level recognition so that young scientists feel encouraged to work in the country and develop new methods. Rural farmers also need to be given comprehensive idea about modern day farming, encapsulating usage of organic fertilizer, diversification of crops and techniques for getting the most by using the least amount of water.                              

 

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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