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Apeksha Bagchi

IWB Blogger

To Help Farmers And Tackle Water Scarcity, NABARD Comes Up With ‘Water Atlas’

  • IWB Post
  •  April 16, 2018

As summer rolls in, farmers all over India face the consequences of water scarcity, especially in the case of rice and sugarcane farming. Using 50-55 percent of India’s total available freshwater is consumed by these two crops alone.

In order to improve crop planning and modify the usage of water so as to curb its wastage, the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) has launched the ‘Water Atlas.’

It has mapped the physical and economic productivity of water available in India and the usage of water usage by crops such as rice, wheat, maize, chickpea (chana), pigeon pea (tur), groundnut, mustard, sugarcane, cotton, and potato.

“ICRIER (Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations), which has estimated water productivity of 10 important crops, is almost ready with its report. It is expected to be out in a month,” Nabard chairman HK Bhanwala said.

The report will give states an idea of how they are contributing towards groundwater depletion, curb the same by shifting to other crops and educating the agrarian community simultaneously.

In order to make sure that crop planning and water efficiency can happen across the country, the water consumption per kilogram of crop output would also be mapped.

Though the government has even tried to shift farmers in Punjab to crops like maize and cotton instead of rice, no change has been observed. What is needed is a robust, lucrative and definite procurement system for such crops and hopefully, the ‘Water Atlas’ will prove to be that system.

H/T: The Better India

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