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Antigua and Barbuda
Irrigation and drainage
Evolution of irrigation development
In 2014, 384.5 ha are equipped for irrigation and actually irrigated in Antigua and Barbuda. Localized irrigation is the only technology used (Table 4).
Surface supplies are the main source of irrigation water for agriculture, with occasional use of groundwater when municipal demands allow (Figure 3).
Government-owned irrigation schemes in Antigua are the Sanderson, Bethesda and Potworks irrigation projects. The Sanderson scheme is the smallest with a size of 8 ha, serving 10 households. The second largest scheme is at Bethesda, serving 10 households. The Potworks scheme is the largest, extending some 50 ha, serving 15 households. All three irrigation schemes service farms which are each 1 ha or less in size.
Role of irrigation in agricultural production, economy and society
In 2014, of a total harvested irrigated crop area of 384.5 ha, 74 percent consisted of vegetables, such as tomatoes, onions, cucumbers, water melon and cabbage, and 26 percent consisted of fruits (Table 4 and Figure 4).
Women and irrigation
Women have limited access to and control over the resources of production in Antigua and Barbuda that makes them more vulnerable to poverty. They utilize farming to fulfil the basic needs of their families. While the Ministry of Lands and Agriculture does not maintain sex-disaggregated data on land ownership, it is understood that women in the country participate more extensively in agricultural production. However, the actual participation of women in farming and agriculture may be under-estimated (CDB, 2014).
Status and evolution of drainage systems
In 1997, the drained surface area was about 808 ha and was limited to on-farm drains constructed to dispose of excess rainfall and downhill runoff (Table 4).