Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Siem Reap farmers warned to be economical with water

Siem Reap farmers warned to be economical with water

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Every year, the ANA opens the reservoir for the farmers’ use from November until the end of February for the dry-season harvest. Apsara National Authority

Siem Reap farmers warned to be economical with water

The Apsara National Authority (ANA) on Tuesday appealed to residents and farmers in Siem Reap province to be more economical in their use of water from the West Baray reservoir to avoid water shortages during the dry season.

“The Department of Water Management at the ANA went down to instruct the farmers to be more mindful of their use of reservoir water in preparation for an extended dry season,” the ANA said.

Its spokesman Long Kosal said on Tuesday that farmers from the province are relying on the West Baray reservoir to irrigate 7,500ha of agriculture.

Every year, the ANA opens the reservoir for the farmers’ use from November until the end of February for the dry-season harvest.

“The farmers can request for water supply from the West Baray reservoir through local authorities or the ANA. Working groups from the community and the Department of Water Management will go down to the areas regularly to supply farmers with enough water,” said Kosal.

Besides the cultivation of dry-season rice, 10,000 cubic metres of water from the reservoir had been distributed to the Siem Reap Water Supply Authority to sustain the daily needs of residents in the province. Water had also been stored to supply underground water sources.

Kosal said a working group from the department had stored 56 million cubic metres of water at the reservoir from August to October, which had come from collected rainwater and Phnom Kulen.

“Our request comes after the government issued a circular calling on local authorities to implement water conservation measures. The directive also instructed authorities to caution farmers from using too much water in their farms.

“They have to cultivate dry-season rice once instead of twice because the current weather condition is not favourable. We also want to avoid confusion among residents who might not have received the news and plan on cultivating dry-season rice a second time,” said Kosal.

National Committee for Disaster Management spokesman Keo Vy said on Tuesday that inter-ministerial institutions are working on mitigating the effects of drought in the province.

“Siem Reap province experiences the impact of drought every year because water from the rivers and canals around the province comes directly from Phnom Kulen.

“But over the last few years, the relevant ministries opened a water treatment facility in the Toek Vil commune to prepare for drought and prevent water shortages.

“We are also working on restoring the rivers in the province in collaboration with a Korean company, and distributing the water running from Phnom Kulen to other rivers and canals,” he said.

In August, Siem Reap and other provinces were struck by severe drought. The Provincial Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries said the drought-affected 20,867ha of paddy fields and ravaged 1,045ha, taking its toll on a total of 24,019 families in 49 communes across the province.

MOST VIEWED

  • Draft law on state of emergency pending finalisation

    Prime Minister Hun Sen will lead a top-level meeting on Tuesdays to review the draft law on imposing a state of emergency. Meantime, he has decided to close all casinos in Cambodia effective April 1. In the press conference after the National Assembly met today, Hun

  • State of emergency on table amid pandemic

    Prime Minister Hun Sen, his deputy prime ministers and legal team will meet on Tuesday to review the draft law on declaring a state of emergency, as Covid-19 cases rose to 107 in the Kingdom on Monday. Speaking at a press conference after a parliament meeting

  • Stranded passengers petition UK for help

    Some 10,521 people have signed an online petition calling on British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and relevant officials to fly nearly 200 passengers out of Cambodia. The petition is targeted at 15,000 people. Most of the passengers are British nationals, who are stranded in Cambodia after airlines cancelled

  • Many in limbo as tension heightens

    As the Kingdom restricts travel and prepares for a state of emergency, some foreigners in Cambodia are scrambling for a way home. Foreign embassies in Phnom Penh are making efforts to get their citizens out, but cancelled flights have become common due to the coronavirus

  • Covid-19 Pandemic: Force majeure and legal consequences

    Is the Covid-19 pandemic considered an event of force majeure? The World Health Organisation declared the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak a pandemic on March 11. Following this declaration, the Ministry of Health and other ministries have taken various legal and administrative measures to prevent the rapid

  • State of emergency draft law set for NA

    A draft law aiming to place the Kingdom in a state of emergency amid the Covid-19 pandemic is set for a debate at the National Assembly (NA) after going through the Council of Ministers’ Standing Committee meeting led by Prime Minister Hun Sen on Tuesday.