Ashgabat, August 16, 2018: United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and Global Environment Facility (GEF) together with the State Committee for Nature Protection of Turkmenistan conducted a training for 26 farmers and representatives of the Committee on planning of irrigation of crops considering the natural and climatic factors using special software of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) "AquaCrop". The training is conducted as part of the joint project “Support to the economic climate resilient livelihoods in agricultural communities in arid regions of Turkmenistan".
One of the main advantages of "AquaCrop" is that it simulates the yield response of herbaceous crops to water and is particularly well suited to conditions in which water is a key limiting factor in crop production.
With the practical application of "AquaCrop" and obtained knowledge, it is expected that farmers will increase the amount of yield by 25% and reduce amount of water for irrigation by 20%.
“The well-being of rural residents directly depends on the quantity and quality of irrigation water. Rational use of water is a priority adaptation measure. Due to climate change, the reclamation of irrigated lands, including the presence of humus in soils, temperature regime, salinity of soil is often not static. The climate and weather background is also changeable. To be widely applicable AquaCrop uses a relatively small number of explicit parameters and mostly-intuitive input-variables requiring simple methods for their determination,” explains Amangul Ovezberdyyeva, UNDP/GEF Project manager.
The project plans to test the software on the basis of project information centers in the pilot farmer associations "Watan" and "Parahat" in the Danev etrap of Lebap velayat and two livestock farms in the Dashoguz velayat. There will be free consultation for water users and assistance in analyzing the recommendations provided by the FAO AquaCrop software.