Watershed techniques establish prosperity for India farmers

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Techniques for establishment of efficient watersheds can make a big difference in developing countries’ farming as explained in an article published in Christian Science Monitor.

An example in the recent Monitor article highlighted the success of a village in a mountain range of India. As explained, about 18 inches of rain per year falls during a one-month period each year, but the water had been running off, not being captured to soak into the soil and recharging the level of underground water.

The village leadership decided to partner with the Watershed Organization Trust (WOTR), a not-for-profit that works in several Indian states to keep water available and bring prosperity to a village. WOTR claims it has conducted 747 watershed projects in India.

Naturally there are demands for changes in the ways of raising crops and livestock, which run contrary to what the villagers have done for generations. A big change required is not cutting trees for energy and no free grazing of cattle.

Construction of water conservation structures is required, which includes “bunds (ridges and ditches in the soil) and check dams,” noted the Monitor article.

The WOTR claims a high level of success by this village in hillside produce production to support villager landowners even to the level of excess crops for selling and establishing jobs for income to non-landowners. The village has also been able to erect public buildings including two new schools.

Information also comes from the Nourishing the Planet project. The article is by no means a good explanation of the water conservation practices established to change months of drought into a productive growing season. To read the full article, click here

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