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Prospects for agricultural water management
The long-term development of the irrigation sector should consider the following key issues (Rout, 2008):
- improving system efficiency and productivity through enhancing infrastructure, increasing the equity of water allocations and developing water storage systems;
- enhancing system operation and maintenance by improving the organization of informal systems, financial self-sufficiency, design of structures to reduce de-silting, protection against water loss and approaches to maintenance;
- increasing sustainability of water resources through development of integrated catchment management plans and sustainable environmental management.
There is great potential for developing both shallow and deep groundwater systems for irrigation and other uses, but precaution must be taken to avoid adversely affecting users of existing systems (Rout, 2008).
Afghanistan does not use the water from the Amu Darya river as it should. Proper use of water from the Amu Darya river would bring thousands of hectares of land under irrigation in northern Afghanistan (ICARDA, 2002).
With rehabilitation of systems and improved management, it is estimated that water use will increase to 35 km3 per year (Rout, 2008).