Gov’t Taking Significant Steps to Unleash Irrigation Potential, Says Hydraulic Expert

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Addis Abeba November 2/2021 (ENA) The Government of Ethiopia is undertaking significant steps to unleash the country’s massive irrigation potentials, a water expert at Hawassa University said.
In an exclusive interview with ENA, Hydraulic Engineering Department Head Associate Professor Moltot Zewdie said land cultivated through irrigation has increased from 600,000 hectares to about 800,000.

Various irrigation dams are being built across the country as the government has given due emphasis to lowland irrigation, he added.

“Though we have not yet engaged aggressively in using our water resources, we are on the right track,” the head noted.

According to him, lowland irrigation is showing encouraging results, despite unexpected occurrences of challenges.  

The associate professor believes that Ethiopia needs to focus on intensive agriculture to ascertain increased productivity and combat food insecurity.

Furthermore, he pointed out that it is high time that the country produced more than once in a year by utilizing the ample irrigation potentials.

For this to happen, Associate Professor Moltot underscored the need to conserve water through various mechanisms since the  reliability of rainfall for such schemes is close to nothing.

The departmetn head noted that conventional farming cannot feed the fast increasing population in Ethiopia.

He stressed the need for intensifying the ongoing efforts of utilizing irrigation potentials.

Associate Professor Molto underlined that Ethiopia can feed not only itself but also others if it uses the huge irrigable land and ample water resources,

Of the total 5.3 million hectares of irrigable land in Ethiopia, less than a million hectare is irrigated.

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