Category Current Posts

Looking forward to the sweet taste of success

By Vikas Prakash Joshi On the occasion of World Honeybee Day, celebrated every year on the third Saturday of August, it is significant to note that India is today the world’s sixth largest producer of honey. (1) Over 2.5 lakh farmers in India are involved in beekeeping or ‘apiculture’ as a business, as per the […]

Agriculture and sustainability – understanding the commonly used terminologies

By Shreya Banerjee In order to deal with the consequences of climate change, the unsustainable nature of conventional agriculture, and the tremendous stress on the world’s limited and rapidly depleting natural resources, various new practices have been coming up in the field of sustainable agriculture. The blog explores the different terminologies that have come up and […]

Water Budgeting in Telangana,Experiences & Insights from the campaign

This the second blogpost  of the series on Water Budgeting in Telangana carried out in  7 Gram Panchayats (GP) of Rangareddy and Nagaurkurnool districts and their neighbouring hamlets. The  water budgets of these villages revealed some startling facts. This region has received low rainfall since the past three years, inspite of that, farmers took water intensive crops and livestock production during irrigation. However, the very high water deficit figures that emerged from the calculation shocked all participants.

Water Budgeting in Telangana, the need and the objective of the campaign

With the aim of “co-production of knowledge and learning to stimulate behavioral and institutional change, towards the management of water at village level” workshops were conducted in each GP and their hamlets.he key objectives of the workshop were to understand the following points: a) What is a Water Budget and how a village water budget is calculated?
(b) How to arrive at values for “Water Deficit” and “Water Surplus” at village level?
(c) The need for planning crop production around the water availability and
(d) To understand water wastage due to mismanagement and / or lack of knowledge.

A Case for Water Governance Standard and Certification System In Rural Areas

The Water Governance Standard and Certification System is  developed to bridge the gap between agrarian communities and the resource agencies. It serves multiple objectives. Its ultimate aim is to develop a system that incentivizes agrarian communities to adopt sustainable water governance practices at local level for assured drinking water and enhanced livelihood opportunities.

Weather Station Blues

There’s a resilience in the farming community that often gets overlooked – a community that has, over generations, developed its own methods and practices of dealing with the unhindered forces of nature. These practices are, unfortunately, being put to test owing to the changing climatic conditions all over the earth. As unpredictable weather patterns keep baffling the farmers, the need for an intervention is apparent to level the playing field. In this regard, we shift the focus on WOTR’s weather advisory initiative which is a real-time, localized, early-warning system which disseminates information directly to the farmers via SMS services. Looking at the effectiveness of the intervention from the vantage point of the farmers brings out the socio-economic complexities which are rarely apparent on the surface.

A conversation with Dr. Suresh Kulkarni, Secretary, Maharashtra Water Resources Regulatory Authority on Water Governance issues in Maharashtra

As WOTR embarks on its 25th year, we are celebrating and disseminatinginformation on all the thematics we are working on . In the month of February 2018, we were disseminating information on Water Stewardship. Our team members, Eshwer Kale and Mandar Sathe, recently ­ interviewed Dr. Suresh Kulkarni, Secretary, Maharashtra Water Resources Regulatory Authority (MWRRA).  Dr. Kulkarni shared his thoughts on diverse issues in the water sector and his insights to improve the level of water governance in the state, specifically focusing on challenges and opportunities in the Maharashtra Groundwater (Development and Management) Act 2009. MWRRA has given an important mandate of ‘State groundwater Authority’ in the 2009 Groundwater Act

Water Scenario for Rural Jalna in 2030: For Domestic and Livelihood Needs- 2

In this report, we provide an overview of the proceedings of the first Transformative Scenario Planning (TSP) workshop titled ‘Water Situation in Rural Jalna in 2030: For Domestic and Livelihood Needs’ convened by Watershed Organisation Trust, on 18th and 19th September 2017 at Krushi Vidnyan Kendra, Jalna. The workshop was conducted in the local language (Marathi).

Why farmers are growing cotton when water is scarce?

-Saumyadeb Dasgupta “I wish they’d had electric guitars in cotton fields back in the good old days. A whole lot of things would’ve been straightened out.” -Jimi Hendrix, 1970 YES, if the ‘whole lot of things’ were farmers wanting to form a band but a NO if it were racial conflicts and oppression faced by […]

A watery slope

Natural forces such as drought do not discriminate between marginal communities and the urban population. As a result you see the unprecedented scenes of Cape Town facing a severe water crisis and on the brink of a catastrophic Day Zero scenario. The problem with the changing climate is that humanity, as a whole, is going to face situations which we have no prior experience in confronting. With such an unpredictable future in front of us, the most vulnerable communities need to be equipped first and foremost to prevent a domino effect leading to systemic failure. In the drought-stricken Marathawada region of Maharashtra, where the water dynamics are extremely complicated, WOTR has taken up the mantle to create resilient communities who are able to deal with the widespread problems of water scarcity. Through its flagship Water Stewardship program, it aims to bring a strong sense of ownership among the stakeholders about the extent of the problem and promote collective action over individualistic approaches. It puts the onus of solving the problem on the community itself thereby reducing the dependence on unsustainable practices.