Increasing Water use Efficiency Sugarcane Growing in India
Sustainable Water Fund (FDW) is a Public-Private Partnership facility which finance projects in the area of water safety and water security. FDW is a facility of the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs / Development Cooperation. The project called “Increasing Water use Efficiency Sugarcane Growing in India” has been approved through Solidaridad (NGO) from Dutch government. The project is financially co-supported by Hindustan Unilever Foundation. Wageningen University eLEAF, public/knowledge partner of the project from Dutch government side. The project will be technically supported by Vasantdada Sugar Institute (VSI), Pune and Osmania University Hyderabad. Two units of NSL Sugar Ltd viz. NSL Krishnaveni Sugar Ltd. and NSL Sugar Ltd., Koppa has been proposed for project area.
The overall objectives of the project are to improve productivity of sugarcane and reduce water consumption per unit by technology transfer, demonstrations, training, measurements and monitoring. The project aims to increase water use efficiency in sugarcane farming in India to address over-exploitation of the groundwater resource that threatens the income security of millions of sugarcane growers and, by extension, the future of sugar mills and associated industry in India. Water productivity measurement by use satellite mapping is the major intervention in the project.
The approach is to work primarily on the self-interest of farmers to adopt water efficient solutions if, as a result, their profit margins increase. In other words, there must be a clear business case for farmers to switch to less water-intensive techniques and practices. The project will therefore promote water efficient irrigation techniques and farming practices.
The proposed intervention strategy is designed to achieve sustainability on the basis of a clear business case for cane farmers.
The project activities centre on the mass adoption of improved irrigation and farming practices that are known to minimize water use and result in higher crop yields and margins for the farmer. 25000 farmers have been targeted to cover under this project in span of 4 years period.