It aims to identify and demonstrate climate-resilient rice farming systems
A three-year ‘ClimaRice’ project, a joint result of various implementing bodies, was formally dedicated to farmers here on Friday.
The project aimed to identify and demonstrate climate-resilient rice farming systems to sustain rice production in a changing climate in the Cauvery River Basin in Tamil Nadu and Krishna River Basin in Andhra Pradesh. Tamil Nadu Agricultural University (TNAU) is the implementing partner for Tamil Nadu, as International Water Management Institute (IWMI), Hyderabad, is for Andhra Pradesh.
Funded by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and The Royal Norwegian Embassy, New Delhi, the project was implemented by a consortium of partners – Bioforsk, Norway, International Pacific Research Centre, Hawaii, TNAU, IWMI, and Indian Institute of Technology, Madras.
The first phase that took off in 2008 got converted into a three-year Phase II with a more farmer-involved approach in 2010. It was formally dedicated to benefit more farmers who desired to adopt the strategies put forth by the project, even as Phase III ‘ClimaAdapt’ project has already been set in motion. The ‘ClimaAdapt’ would focus on training farmers, capacity building, implementing of various adoption strategies, and improving policy linkages.
Explaining the project to presspersons at the final workshop and stakeholders’ conference on ‘ClimaRice’, Nagothu Udaya Sekhar, International Co-ordinator, The Norwegian Institute for Agricultural and Environmental Research, Norway, said the multi-disciplinary project involved stakeholder integration that meant working closely with farmers from the beginning of the project, and the scientific results of which would be used to support policy decision.
K. Ramasamy, Vice-Chancellor of TNAU, said that since the university was one of the nodal agencies contributing to the State Action Plan for Climate Change, the results of this project would be taken as vital inputs.
The university would be a partner in Phase III of the project (ClimaAdapt) too, which would focus on implementing adoption strategies of ‘ClimaRice’.
V. Geethalakshmi, Principal Investigator of the project, said that research and implementation of ‘ClimaRice’ was carried out in a parallel manner so that the research results could be immediately tested on the field.
‘Clima villages’ were identified from which ‘Clima farmers’ were selected to adopt the strategies, including the System of Rice Intensification (SRI) and Direct Sowing of Rice (DSR). Later, nearly 1,500 farmers in the Kalingarayan and Ponnaniar Canals were made to try these strategies and the feedback obtained was positive.
A policy manual on ‘ClimaRice’ was released on the occasion.