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Government to align agriculture with changing climate and rainfall patterns

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New Delhi: The government plans to review crop planting across the country to align agricultural planning with changes in climate and rainfall patterns.

The focus of this exercise is to move towards precision agriculture with optimum water and nutrient use through drip, fertigation, conservation agriculture, mechanization.

“Climate changes are happening across the globe. We need to realign our crop planning as per the changes in climate and monsoon pattern. This will increase our productivity and help select right crop to plant,” said agriculture commisioner S K Malhotra.

He said the governmenthad divided entire country into 20 Agro- Ecological Regions (AERs) in 1992 by including soil and length of growing period for scientific planning and development of agriculture and allied sectors.

“Now these 20 regions are compressed into seven zones for better coordination and implementation of central schemes. We are charting out zone wise crop plan for a scientific farming,” he said.

The plan for each zone broadly will deal with the necessary diversification of crops with relation to climate change, farm mechanisation, adoption of agro-forestry systems including medicinal plants with integration of animal husbandry in arid region, export promotion and maximising farmers’ income of that region through scientific interventions.

“In last few years, there has been significant changes in monsoon pattern. Arid states like Rajasthan are receiving more than normal rains and retreat of monsoon too has been delayed. Our plans should be in sync with contemporary changes in climate and demands at global market. It should also have a futuristic vision,” said another senior officer involved in the exercise.

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