Solar pump to feed a water storage tank with drip irrigation at the PARC demonstration farm in Pakistan
Water, ecosystems and human development – each is deeply connected with the next. It is also the theme of this year’s World Water Week, the annual gathering of experts in global water issues. Here discussions will focus on the role business can play in water stewardship, and its contribution to sustainable water management in factories, at watersheds, in agricultural supply chains and communities.
In Pakistan, the agriculture sector remains one of the largest and most inefficient users of water. Worldwide, about 70 percent of all water is used in agriculture. Locally, that percentage stands at 90 percent, with 50 percent wastage due to poor irrigation methods. Therefore, it is vitally important to focus on increasing the overall efficiency of water usage by this sector.
Nestlé Waters Pakistan has partnered with Pakistan’s Agricultural Research Council (PARC) to enhance the organisation’s technical capacity by installing high-efficiency irrigation systems featuring solar water pumps at the 6-acre demonstration site. Various low-water techniques are on show, including drip irrigation on 1 acre orchard, sprinkler systems on 2.5 acres and ridges/furrow bed on 2.5 acres.
“Water scarcity is a huge challenge that we face today,” said Fazal Abbas Makan from Pakistan’s Ministry of National Food Security & Research. “This partnership between PARC and Nestle Pakistan is an excellent example of how the private and public sectors can come together and work on something which is beneficial for all.”
PARC is the apex national organization working closely with Pakistan’s federal, provincial research institutes and universities to provide science-based solutions to agriculture related issues faced by the country.
The site will model best practices by using innovative methods and environment friendly technology to enhance crop production through minimum use of water, and is part of Nestlé Waters’ commitment to water stewardship. The project will also serve as a knowledge hub for farmers, professionals, media, and those visiting the research centre, providing a platform for water stewardship locally, where it matters.