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Innovations in managing the agriculture-groundwater and energy nexus


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Innovations in managing the agriculture-groundwater and energy nexus

  1. 1. Innovations in managing the agriculture- groundwater and energy nexusEvidence from three states in India Aditi Mukherji, IWMI Photo Davidvan Cakenberghe/IWMI Photo: :Tom van Cakenberghe/IWMI Tom Brazier/IWMI Water for a food-secure world
  2. 2. The irrigation story of India…. Since 1970s, groundwater irrigated area has increased, as has number of wells and tubewells…. Water for a food-secure world
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  7. 7. Rising contribution of groundwater in agriculture % of Agricultural GDP 60 1970-73 40 20 BUT, depletion, scarcity and over-exploitation have 0 emerged as serious problems Percentage to Agricultural GDP 1 21 41 61 81 101 121 141 161 181 201 221 241 Districts 60 2000-03 40 20 0 1 21 41 61 81 101 121 141 161 181 201 221 241 Districts % contribution of SWI to Agricultural GDP % contribution of GWI to Agricultural GDP
  8. 8. Leading to groundwater over-exploitation in many states…… Districts depicted in red and yellow are the districts with over- exploitation problems
  9. 9. Growth in electricity consumption in agriculture has outpaced growth in other sectors There has been 12 fold increase in overall electricity demand in India from 1950 to 2010, but 25 fold increase in agricultural electricity demand Water for a food-secure world
  10. 10. Electricity subsidy as percentage of state fiscal deficits isvery high in some states Bihar West Bengal Agriculture is often blamed for U.P (Power corp) poor state of electricity utilities Maharashtra Punjab Tamil NaduRajasthan (Transco) Karnataka Yet farmers receive Andhra Pradesh poor quality service Gujarat Haryana Madhya Pradesh 0 20 40 60 80 100 PercentageBRISCOE, 2005, Data pertains to 2002
  11. 11. And requirement for subsidy keeps rising… Net electricity subsidy in India is close to USD 9 billion and is rising year by yearSource: ICRA
  12. 12. Farmers get free or highly subsidized electricity in most states (though not all). 2500 2160 2000 Rs/HP/Year 1512 1500 850 1000 420 500 0 0 Punjab Haryana Gujarat Uttarakhand West Bengal States Flat rate tariff (Rs/HP/year)Even when farmers pay for electricity, they pay it on a flat tariff basis. Onlyexception is the state of West Bengal where agricultural tubewells areMetered and farmers pay a time of the day (TOD) tariff
  13. 13. But then, there is the energy divide: Farmers in eastern India dependpre-dominantly on diesel pumps, while rest of India has electric pumps So the food- energy- irrigation nexus is also different in east vs. rest of India Water for a food-secure world
  14. 14. To sum up…what is this food-irrigation and energy nexus?• India’s irrigation sector is dependent on groundwater• Much of this groundwater is pumped using electricity• Groundwater use is more than sustainable recharge in most states leading to groundwater over-exploitation• Electricity is subsidized in most (though not all) states• This creates a nexus where one sector (agriculture) is dependent on unsustainable trends groundwater and electricity sectors Water for a food-secure world
  15. 15. The Food-Energy Support price policy/ Assured market AGRICULTUREIrrigation Nexus Re-aligning food procurement Choice of crops Uncertain markets for policiesdiversification crop Providing incentives to grow low Agriculture water consuming crops Better field water management techniques Ene ific er n rgy atio t Wa d Agr wa an und s ta ers ge/ cultur Gro div Mis i ng op dire Subsi leti Water- f cr Dep cte Energy - e ko Agriculture d Lac Nexus die s ELECTRICITY and Low recoveries GROUNDWATER low investment in Limited reach of Demand side management infrastructure GW laws and regulations surface irrigation/ Supply management through Supply augmentation uncertain rainfall rationing Poor quality and unreliable power Lucrative through MAR Groundwater Long hours of pumping Energy Increasing efficiency of Supplygroundwater Demand management pumps markets Low awareness community Wastage of water and energy through Highly subsidised/ Institutional reforms regarding optimal free power participation irrigation
  16. 16. How are different states in India managing this nexus through energy side interventions?• West Bengal – Eastern India• Punjab – Northern India• Karnataka – Southern India Water for a food-secure world
  17. 17. West Bengal: Alluvial aquifers, lowgroundwater use and high recharge Water tables recover after monsoons and average depth to water table in 88% of villages less than 10 m. 42% of GW resources are used and none of the blocks are over-exploited Water for a food-secure world
  18. 18. Managing the nexus in West Bengal through Universal TOD and hi-tech metering• Universal Time of the Day (TOD) metering of all agricultural tubewells in the state. Till March 2010, 90% TWs metered• High tech metering with remotely read meters
  19. 19. Impacts of meteringPump owners:Largely winners Same hours of pumping for own use– Less electricity bill Less hour of selling water – Higher or same revenueHigher bargaining power vis-à-vis water buyersWin – win situation
  20. 20. Water buyers:Losers  Increase in water charges by 30-50%  Lesser hours sold by pump owners  Adverse terms & condition of buying water
  21. 21. Groundwateruse efficiency:Winner Increased adoption of plastic pipes for conveyance Better maintenance of field channelsConstruction of underground pipelinesBut will it save water?
  22. 22. Food-irrigation-energy nexus in PunjabUnsustainable rates of GW depletion Rice Wheat crop combination matches over-exploited zones in Punjab WRSu WR WMRSu WR WR WRM WR WRC WRC WR WR CR Rice-Wheat Crop System in Punjab is at the heart of its agrarian prosperity CROP COMBINATIONS and also contributes to its GW crisis TWO CROP COMBINATION THREE CROP COMBINATION FOUR CROP COMBINATION Alluvial aquifers and low rainfall
  23. 23. Steps taken by Punjab to manage the nexus These measures are reasonably successful in improving quality of electricity to farmers, but severe rationing pushes them to use diesel. Fiscal discipline within the utilities has improved. Has not affected crop yields adversely yet.
  24. 24. Transmission and distribution losses have reduced marginally… T&D losses based on AP T&D loss level consumption T&D loss level fixed reported by the approved by the Year by the Commission Board Commission 2004-05 23.25 24.27 24.59 2005-06 22 25.07 25.38 2006-07 20.75 23.92 24.25 2007-08 19.5 22.53 25.12 2008-09 19.5 19.92 22.21 2009-10 22 19.5 22 2010-11 20 18 19.5 2011-12 19 2012-13 18 Water for a food-secure world
  25. 25. But subsidy burden for agricultural consumption keeps rising…. This is because the state keeps issuing new electricity connections for farmers. There are 1.1 million farm households and around 1.2 million electric pumps in the state! Water for a food-secure world
  26. 26. Food-energy-irrigation nexus in Karnataka Area under groundwater irrigation continues to rise… As does number of electric pumpsets..Hard rock aquifers and low rainfall
  27. 27. (Mis) managing Food-Energy-Irrigation Nexus in Karnataka Water for a food-secure world
  28. 28. Conclusions• While the broad issues are same, different states have managed this nexus differently• Ranging from very hi-tech and text-book solution in West Bengal, to second best solution in Punjab to utter anarchy in Karnataka• Much depends on political will and overall governance at state level since both water and electricity are state subjects in India Water for a food-secure world
  29. 29. Thank You a.mukherji@cgiar.orgWater for a food-secure world