Water Resources and R&D Program in Rainfed areas

Rainfed areas of Punjab are water scarce region with limited water resources. The potential for rain-water harvesting in core rainfed region-The Pothwar has been estimated to be around 3 MAF, while only 0.3 MAF has so for been harvested in the form of around 60 small dams, 1278 mini dams, more than 2000 ponds. The point of concern is that on one hand we are harvesting 1/10th of the water harvesting potential and on the other hand we are not using stored water efficiently.  This water is very precious and must be used efficiently to grow high value crops. BARI has a long-term R&D program on evaluation and promotion of water saving techniques in collaboration with ICARDA and USDA. Various water saving techniques are summarized below:

Drip Irrigation System has the highest water saving. More area can be brought under high value crops

Bed/Ridge Planting saves water and improves yield of crops

Micro-catchments and Roof-top water harvesting cut down irrigation cost