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UNESCO-IHE Institute for Water Education, Delft (2019)

Comparison of water allocation strategies to irrigation under water scarcity

Subedi, Alka

Titre : Comparison of water allocation strategies to irrigation under water scarcity

Auteur : Subedi, Alka

Université de soutenance : UNESCO-IHE Institute for Water Education, Delft

Grade : Master of Science (MS) 2019

Résumé partiel
Seasonal variation in available water resources creates concerns in the field of irrigation, and affects the performance irrigation systems. Two major stakeholders associated with the irrigation systems are the farmers and the water managers and the course of action chosen by one based on water availability influences the behaviour of the other. This study focuses on understanding the influence of water availability on year to year cropping pattern decisions made by farmers and water managers for an irrigation project in Nepal and how these decisions influence irrigation system performance. An overview of water allocation strategies implemented around the world was gathered and reviewed which provided insight into established water allocation strategies during the irrigation season and how they deal with water shortage. Consultation with the farmers regarding the decisions they make for crop selection, cropping area and the course of actions they chose during water shortage provided the framework for formulating a farmer decision model. This farmer decision model was developed for the irrigation project in Nepal with the aim of understanding the farmer’s behaviour towards water allocation strategy. This decision model was applied to simulate the decisions made over 52 years, depending on the consideration of a conservative (dry), an average, or an over-confident (wet) water availability expectation at the source. The concept of using historical data and regional seasonal forecast for streamflow prediction by water managers to make the water availability announcement at specific decision moments during the irrigation season was assessed to understand the influence of these on farmer’s decision. The farmer decision model was extended to incorporate the influence of the allocation strategy on different types of a farmer (subsistence and cash crop farmers) as well as for different farmers setting in the command area as head, middle, and tail users. Results of the performance of the irrigation system show that the farmer’s decision on crop selection and area coverage for both subsistence and cash crop farmers is significantly affected by water availability. For the different consideration of a year that is expected to be wet, average or dry, a wet year has higher overall cropping intensity for an irrigation season.

Sujets  : water allocation water scarcity water resources management irrigation agriculture Nepal

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Page publiée le 14 avril 2021