Resource Conserving Technologies in Agriculture
Resources are an important asset for a country. Unfortunately the non judicious use of these has put them in very critical situation. The indiscriminate use of chemicals for increasing productivity and disease controls have polluted water bodies and degraded soils. What is worrying is that there is a gender specific effect to the resource degradation. It is increasing the time required for fulfillment of female responsibilities such as food production, fuel wood collection and soil and water conservation. An array of resource conservation technologies are available. These include zero and reduced tillage, green manuring, crop rotations etc.
Resource conservation technologies aim to produce more at less cost while at the same time enhancing the natural resource base and maintenance of soil quality in fairly good conditions. The input use efficiency also gets increased due to the right placement of the seeds and fertilizers at right time and at right depth.
Some of the resource conservation practices area:
Reduction of tillage and retention of adequate surface crop residues over the soil. Zero tillage in wheat has reported to reduce the production costs by 2000 to 2500 per hectare and 15-20 percent saving in irrigation water.
Similarly by using drip and sprinkler type of irrigation methods the more area can be brought under irrigation than the conventional irrigation methods by canals.
The use of Farm Yard Manure (FYM), Compost, and Bio fertilizers also reduce over dependence on the chemicals led intensive cultivation. These also are beneficial for soil health, soil micro organisms and soil fertility in the long run. Promoting diversification of agriculture with subsidiary occupations also lead to enhancement of farm incomes and reduction of risks in case of failure of one of the components.