Solar powered pump irrigation projects hasten
LA TRINIDAD, Benguet The National Irrigation Administration – Cordillera (NIA-CAR) putting
premium on water management said there is a sufficient supply of water to it’s national and
communal irrigation systems even as the agency has prepared strategies to cope with El Nino.
In an interview, Engineer Chrisanta Beray, NIA-CAR’s Operations Chief, said “for now , there is a sufficient water supply to both national irrigation systems (NIS) and communal irrigation systems
Beray added that their agency is always been ready for such weather phenomenon, in fact, two strategies are in placed – procedural response and technical interventions. The NIA official stressed
that all of their provincial managers are instructed to monitor the impact of el nino in their respective areas of operation. Implement rotation of irrigation delivery, controlled irrigation (alternate wetting and drying) ,and plant vegetables and crops that do not require much water topped it’s procedural response.
Engr. Samuel Bahiwag,Chief of Engineering Section, said some of the agency’s long standing
technical interventions include– installation of pumps to augment water supply, construction of water re-use structures. Construction of canal lining to reduce water losses due to seepage, and repair and maintenance of paddy dikes to avoid water wastage. In fact, with the current harvest period and for regular maintenance, NIS irrigation delivery have been cut-off in Abra, Ifugao and Apayao.
While the Upper Chico Irrigation System (UCRIS) in Kalinga still be cut in July. For the record, Beray said the average yield of palay per hectare on the agency’s assisted developed areas ( NIS) in 2022 for dry season yielded 105 cavans while 89 cavans during the wet season. Meanwhile, in 2022,the agency has completed a total of 23 solar power driven pump irrigation projects ,all in Kalinga (14) and Abra (9) with a total value of P150,000.
Through the solar irrigation projects, it restored 258 hectares of new areas and restored 143.65 for a total of 401.65 has. and almost 700 farmers were benefitted while some 914 jobs were generated.
For this year (2023) , NIACAR has a total of 22 solar irrigation projects with total allocation of P138,900. These solar irrigation projects are located in Kalinga (10), Abra (9), Apayao (2) and
one in Ifugao.