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More water for life
Date:3/22/2010

water salinity along coastal areas where rice is planted is a continuing challenge. Sea water that flows inland along with the high tides spill over and salinizes soil and shallow ground water, particularly during post-harvest season when the rice fields are bare. Approximately 90% of the arable lands in the coastal areas have been salinized this way, resulting in extended fallow period - when the land is left uncultivated. To reduce this long fallow period and to improve farmers livelihood, it has been recommended to have another crop grown and harvested to improve food security.

Through an IAEA technical cooperation project, a new integrated technology that estimates soil, water content for timely introduction of brackish water to maximize intake by plants was tested. The project also introduced the use of isotopic techniques to assess the tolerance of different crops to different range of soil and water salinity during the fallow period. Using these techniques, Bangladeshi farmers were able to successfully plant salt-tolerant varieties of beans sesame, chickpeas, groundnuts and wheat on these fields immediately following the rice harvest. These crops boosted farmers' income during the off-harvest months and helped improve their livelihoods. Read more

In China, scientist from 12 countries recently gathered to evaluate a range of range of conventional and isotopic techniques that can measure quantities of water lost to soil evaporation and plant transpiration, a process known as evapotranspiration (ET). With support form the IAEA and the Chinese government, the scientists conducted field tests in a maize field using both state-of-the-art laser technology, as well as low-level methods to measure ET under different irrigation management systems. The ability to partition ET into evaporation and transpiration components is important because it helps farmers find better and more efficient ways to use water by increasing transpiration and reducing eva
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International Atomic Energy Agency
Source:Eurekalert

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