Resource Conservation Technologies

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Bakhsh, Allah
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Kanwar, Rameshwar
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Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering

Since 1905, the Department of Agricultural Engineering, now the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering (ABE), has been a leader in providing engineering solutions to agricultural problems in the United States and the world. The department’s original mission was to mechanize agriculture. That mission has evolved to encompass a global view of the entire food production system–the wise management of natural resources in the production, processing, storage, handling, and use of food fiber and other biological products.

In 1905 Agricultural Engineering was recognized as a subdivision of the Department of Agronomy, and in 1907 it was recognized as a unique department. It was renamed the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering in 1990. The department merged with the Department of Industrial Education and Technology in 2004.

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  • Department of Agricultural Engineering (1907–1990)

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The world population is likely to increase to 9 billion in 2050. This will require increasing global food production to almost 100% by 2050 to meet the food security needs of an increasing population. To meet the demand for more food supplies, conservation of land and water resources is indispensable. Worldwide, land and water resources are not only shrinking but also degrading fast and therefore, are expected to put additional stresses on both natural resources. Whereas, annual water availability per capita in developing countries like Pakistan has already declined from 5600 m3 in 1950s to less than 1000 m3 in 2014. This situation has placed Pakistan in the list of water deficit countries, adversely affecting its economic growth and wellbeing of the citizens mainly due to water shortage for industry and agriculture. Adequate water availability is a pre-requisite for ensuring food security because on the average, it has an annual rainfall of 240 mm against average annual evapotranspiration of about 2000 mm. Moreover, the country receives about 70% of its annual rainfall during the monsoon season of 70-90 days, whereas water is required throughout the year for growing crops. To cope with increasing food and water requirements of the growing population in the country, there is a crucial need of conservation of land and water resources. This chapter highlights the basic principles of resource conservation technologies including watercourse improvement, laser land leveling, zero tillage, improved irrigation methods, terracing, salinity, skimming well technology, rainwater harvesting and groundwater.


This book chapter is published as Bakhsh, Allah, and Rameshwar S. Kanwar. "Resource Conservation Technologies." Chapter 15 in: Applied Irrigation Engineering. Editors: Allah Bakhsh and Muhammad Rafiq Choudhary. Managing editors: Iqrar Ahmad Khan and Muhammad Farooq. Published by University of Agriculture Faisalabad, Pakistan. (2017): 329-350.

Sun Jan 01 00:00:00 UTC 2017