NIA rotates water distribution to Aklan's El Niņo vulnerable ricelands
by Venus G. Villanueva
Kalibo, Aklan (15 February) -- The National Irrigation Administration (NIA) here is currently conducting the rotational method of water distribution to Aklan's 750 hectares of rice farms found vulnerable to El Niņo.
Rice plants on these farms, according to NIA, are on their reproductive growth stage and the farmers are now worried their farms will be greatly affected by the dry spell.
Of the 750 hectares of ricefarms vulnerable to El Niņo, 400 hectares are under the National Irrigation System (NIS) while 350 hectares are under Communal Irrigation System (CIS).
As measures to save these farmlands, the NIA has deployed standby equipment (bulldozer and backhoe) for river channeling, on top of the conduct of rotational method of water distribution.
NIA also projects to install shallow tube wells at the tail-end portions of irrigation canals for farms under the NIS.
For farms under the CIS, NIA will also be installing shallow tube wells at the tail-end portions of canals while sustaining its rotational method of water distribution in the farms.
There are two river irrigation systems under the NIS namely Aklan RIS in the east and west side, and the Panakuyan River System, while the CIS has 32 irrigation systems located in most towns of the province.
Presently, a total of 3,804 hectares of ricefarms under NIS on reproductive growth and 1,794 hectares under CIS are closely monitored by the NIA.
Aklan has been assessed by the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) as one of the 24 provinces in the country which is "moderately vulnerable" to El Niņo. Another Panay province included in this classification is Antique, while the provinces of Iloilo, Capiz and Negros Occidental had been identified as "highly vulnerable" areas. (PIA) [top]