Estimating the potential for expanding smallholder irrigation in Sub-Saharan Africa uri icon

abstract

  • Smallholder irrigation may considerably contribute to agricultural productivity growth in Sub-Saharan Africa. However, the full potential of expanding smallholder irrigation under alternative irrigation technologies is not known. This paper presents a study to assess the irrigation expansion potential for four smallholder irrigation technologies: motor pumps, treadle pumps, communal river diversion, and small reservoirs. An integrated modeling system that combines GIS data analysis, biophysical and economic predictive modeling, and crop mix optimization techniques was developed for the assessment.
  • The study revealed a large potential for profitable smallholder irrigation expansion in Sub-Sahara Africa. Area expansion potential is 30 million ha for motor pumps, 24 million ha for treadle pumps, 22 million ha for small reservoirs and 20 million ha for communal river diversions. The technologies can benefit between 113 and 369 million rural people in the region generating net revenues of US $ 14-22 billion/yr. depending on technology. Final expansion potential depends on irrigation technology cost and commodity price developments. (C) 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

publication date

  • 2014
  • 2014
  • 2014