EXPERIENCES OF BULK WATER ALLOCATION IN LARGE SCALE IRRIGATION MANAGEMENT

EXPERIENCES OF BULK WATER ALLOCATION IN LARGE SCALE IRRIGATION MANAGEMENT

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Part of #EXPERIENCES OF BULK WATER ALLOCATION IN LARGE SCALE IRRIGATION MANAGEMENT# :

Publishing year : 2007

Conference : The 4th Asian Conference and the 10th International Seminar on Irrigation Participatory Management

Number of pages : 12

Abstract: Irrigation Management Turnover (IMT) was introduced in the major and medium scale irrigation scheme in Sri Lanka in the early 1990s. After over a decade of experience it has been found that Water Users Associations (WUAs) have failed to mobilize sufficient amount of resources towards system operation and maintenance (O & amp; M) leading to inefficient water use and deterioration of irrigation infrastructure. The concept of Bulk Water Allocation (BWA) was introduced in 2002 and the pilot tested in Mahaweli System-H to find out a methodology that can be used as a complete solution for water management problems in large scale irrigation schemes. Under the BWA, the amount of water to be issued for a particular distribution channel (DC) and consequently for a particular user for cultivation practices in a given season is fixed before the season begins. The concept provided the volumetric impression of water use and the incentive to use water in an efficient way. The research findings show that water productivity, cropping intensity and extent of cultivation in dry seasons have significantly increased after the implementation of BWA, while using less amount of water to cultivate one unit of land has decreased. Farmer perception in BWA is also very positive in terms of increase in productivity and income. The BWA concept has been seen as a strategy to achieve the expected IMT goals.
Adequate supply of water with reliability and timeliness has improved the farmers' confidence in water issues, which has been a great incentive to motivate farmers to shift from traditional high water consuming, low return rice cultivation to less water consumtive, high yield cash crops. Decentralized partial O & amp; M cost recovery recovered by BWA has been successful in achieving a targeted collection compared to past failed
attempts of centralized water charges.