Development of a decision support system for small reservoir irrigation systems in rainfed and drought prone areas

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Courtesy of IWA Publishing

An integrated computer program called Cropping System and Water Management Model (CSWM) with a three-step feature (expert system—simulation—optimization) was developed to address a range of decision support for rainfed farming, i.e. crop selection, scheduling and optimisation. The system was used for agricultural planning with emphasis on sustainable agriculture in the rainfed areas through the use of small farm reservoirs for increased production and resource conservation and management. The application of the model was carried out using crop, soil, and climate and water resource data from the Philippines. Primarily, four sets of data representing the different rainfall classification of the country were collected, analysed, and used as input in the model. Simulations were also done on date of planting, probabilities of wet and dry period and with various capacities of the water reservoir used for supplemental irrigation. Through the analysis, useful information was obtained to determine suitable crops in the region, cropping schedule and pattern appropriate to the specific climate conditions. In addition, optimisation of the use of the land and water resources can be achieved in areas partly irrigated by small reservoirs.

Keywords: CSWM model, decision support system, rainfed agriculture, small farm reservoir

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