Question-1: Water efficient agriculture is the need of the hour. Explain role of Direct Seeding of Rice in reducing water efficiency.
Answer: The world is witnessing change in agriculture pattern with increasing stress on water usage. This has put burden on natural sources, including on soil efficiency. Population explosion has made food securityeven more important.
Importance of water efficient agriculture
- Declining ground water table
Over usage of water has put pressure on aquifers. In many places with water intensive agriculture, the levels have gone belowreplacement level.
- Changing soil quality
Soil quality should be optimal for agriculture, with balance between salts, minerals and other organic matter. Over water usage can change pH and reduce soil quality.
- Erratic monsoon
Monsoon in India is becoming more erratic due to climate change. This puts onus on underground water for fulfilling irrigation needs. In such scenario, protecting groundwater is critical.
Role of Direct Seeding of Rice in water efficiency
- No puddling
In puddling, field is filled with water and rice saplings are transplanted. Direct Seeding of Rice reduces need for puddling and saves water.
- Helps in groundwater recharge
Puddling method creates a hard crust below top layer that prevents water from percolating underground. Direct Seeding method removes such barrier.
Thus, water efficient agriculture is the need of the hour. There is a need to diversify crops for prolongation of soil health.
Tags: GS 3 ( Agriculture)