Irrigation and drainage of lands

Irrigation and drainage (hydrotechnical reclamation) of lands implies the combination of the measures and structures providing improvement of natural conditions for using lands for agricultural purposes by regulating the soil water regime.

Hydrotechnical reclamation implies a package of measures aimed at radical improvement of unfavourable water regime of agricultural lands. Basic types of hydrotechnical reclamation are irrigation, drainage, and watering. In addition to soil conservation by afforestation (silvicultural reclamation) and chemical reclamation, the hydrotechnical reclamation practice contributes to enhancement of soil fertility and improvement of natural conditions of farming agriculture. Hydrotechnical reclamation enables not only regulating soil water regime, but also has an effect on its air, thermal, salt, and microbiological regimes, ensures sustainability of agricultural production, allows using lands efficiently. It is carried out along with development and proper use of lands (crop rotation, selection of crops and varieties, intensive cultivation technology, etc.). Hydrotechnical reclamation provides for: construction of hydraulic facilities; terracing of slopes, arrangement of drained canals thereon, creation of protective forest plantations, etc. for controlling water erosion of soil.

Hydrotechnical reclamation is carried out with the view of controlling soil water regime.

Implementation of hydrotechnical reclamation requires considerable capital investments; therefore its feasibility study needs to be performed. The highest efficiency of land reclamation practice can be achieved under condition of its combined use, notably: when irrigation is combined with drainage of lands, and drainage with periodical irrigation; when hydrotechnical reclamation goes with proper work management, with high level of agricultural technology, application of required quantity of fertilizers, and so on; stabilization of steep slopes and ravines along with installation of multibranch channels and dikes, flumes and falls with forest plantations and grasslanding; construction of ponds and reservoirs along with land irrigation and fishery; by drainage of lands along with carrying out lime treatment of soil and a complex of land clearing and reclamation works; development and leaching of saline lands along with ameliorative ploughing, gypsuming, selection of crops-reclaimers. In addition, for proper development of irrigated, drained and eroded lands, right selection of species and variety of crops and their alteration in crop rotation of regular and special purposes, as well as economy and management of agricultural production are essential.

Irrigation and drainage (hydrotechnical reclamation) system represents a complex of interrelated facilities and technical facilities for irrigation and drainage of lands.

Irrigation and drainage network is a complex of interrelated hydrotechnical facilities of hydrotechnical reclamation system providing water supply and diversion at land reclamation.

Irrigation and drainage conduction network of is a part of irrigation and drainage system which is intended for water transportation.

Irrigation and drainage regulation network is a part of Irrigation and drainage system which is intended for direct regulation of soil moisture within a specified range.

Reclamation fund represents the lands suitable for economic use and requiring being reclaimed.

Reclamation lands are the lands of the reclamation fund on which reclamation works are carried out.

Catch-water of irrigation and drainage system is represented by a watercourse, water body, topographic depression and/or the zone of partial saturation of rocks with water, which are used for discharge of drainage and/or irrigation water to them.

Selected bibliography