Monday, January 23, 2012

CHINA: Agricultural Water Savings with Adapted SRI Practices in Sichuan

SRI (System of Rice Intensification) has become Sichuan Province's preferred rice production method since 2005, with reports of the provincial yield record for rice being broken year after year. By 2010, the SRI area in Sichuan Province had reached over 301,067 ha, starting from 1,133 ha in 2004.  For the period 2004-10, the total additional benefit of using SRI methods in Sichuan was almost USD 320 million at the current rate of exchange, accompanied by reduced costs and less requirement of water.

Agriculture consumes 80% of the total water resources in Sichuan Province, which has a population of 88.6 million. A recent article by Zheng Jia-guo and his colleagues the Crop Research Institute, SAAS, Chengdu, details how they are adapting SRI to conserve water in that province as well as how this may change in the future. With modified SRI practices, both WUE (Water Use Efficiency) and IWUE (Irrigation Water Use Efficiency) were shown to be higher than with the traditional practices, by 54.2% and 90.0%, respectively, significantly reducing water consumption. [See more on how SRI is being adapted to conditions in Sichuan]

For more information on SRI in China, see our SRI China page.

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