Research begins on groundwater use

- POST REPORT, Kathmandu

Sep 18, 2014-

Irrigation Minister Narayan Prakash Saud and Australian Ambassador to Nepal Glenn White have jointly launched a four-year research project on sustainable use of ground and surface water.

The Rs 200 million regional project will carry out projects in six districts of the Eastern Indo Gangetic Plains (E-IGP) which includes two districts in the eastern Tarai in Nepal and two each in the Indian States of Bihar and West Bengal.

“In the backdrop that over 75 percent of potential irrigable land lies in the Tarai region of Nepal, which is considered to be the country’s bread basket, and as agriculture contributes to over 30 percent of the country’s GDP, access to water for irrigation during the dry season is expected to enhance agricultural productivity and improve incomes and food security,” envoy White said.

The E-IGP is one of the most densely populated and poverty stricken belts in South Asia. Farmers in the region, however, are unable to make optimal use of groundwater and pond water due to various problems.

Titled ‘Improving water use for dry season agriculture by marginal and tenant farmers in the Eastern Gangetic Plain,’ the project will analyse key constraints and opportunities for conjunctive and sustainable use of groundwater and surface water, according to the Australian Embassy in Kathmandu.

The project is led by the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research and supported by the Department of Irrigation, Bangladesh Rice Research Institute and Indian Council of Agricultural Research.

Published: 19-09-2014 09:20

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