Ashgabat, 22 June 2018: Mr. Rastislav Vrbensky, UNDP Deputy Director for Europe and the CIS, UNDP Turkmenistan management, Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Water Economy of Turkmenistan and representative of the Academy of Sciences of Turkmenistan have launched the research site of 145 ha in Geokdepe and held the first demonstration of the field.
“Under the current conditions, it is vital to learn how climate change will affect agriculture to ensure food security and high yield. We are going to engage researchers and allow them using this field for data collection and informed decision making. It was heavily salinated and now we are using various technics to test soil and water quality,” noted Deputy minister of Agriculture and Water Economy of Turkmenistan.
During the demonstration of the field, high level guests visited the field camp where local experts have explained the ongoing research, two pumping stations that provide water to dripping and sprinkler irrigation systems, special liquid fertilizer research site conducted by the experts from the Water design and research institute “Turkmensuwylymtaslama” and one of the demonstration fields where modern irrigation technology is tested.
The 145 ha Geokdepe field belongs to the Water design and research institute “Turkmensuwylymtaslama” of the Ministry of Agriculture and Water Economy of Turkmenistan where UNDP together with the experts of Water design and research institute and postgraduates of the Academy of Sciences test various irrigation technologies to find out the most fitting for the agricultural conditions of Turkmenistan.
At the moment, two young researchers - postgraduates from the Academy of Sciences of Turkmenistan work at the field. Researchers will monitor and measure various indicators including water and energy consumption per unit of agriculture product, mineral and organic fertilizers, soil moisture, land salinization and improvements in ameliorative condition of lands, crop growth and others throughout the next three years and present their findings and reports for decision making on effective approaches to water and land management. The successful results of the research at Geokdepe field are expected to be replicated at the national level. UNDP also foresees launch of the master level programme in agriculture and water management together with the Academy of Sciences of Turkmenistan.