Economics, adoption determinants, and impacts of micro-irrigation technologies: empirical results from India
Elecon, Int Water Management Inst
Micro-irrigation technologies are promoted for various reasons in India. Despite the reported significant economic advantages, and the concerted support of the government and NGOs, the current micro-irrigation area in India remains an insignificant proportion of its potential. This paper analyzes: (1) the economics of alternative micro-irrigation technologies, (2) the determinants of adoption, (3) the poverty outreach of the different micro-irrigation systems, and (4) the sustainability implications of micro-irrigation adoption. In line with the findings of other studies, this study indicates that micro-irrigation technologies result in a significant productivity and economic gains. The most important determinants of micro-irrigation adoption include access to groundwater, cropping pattern, availability of cash, and level of education, the social status and poverty status of the farmer. Contrary to the expectations, the majority of the current adopters of low-cost micro-irrigation systems are the better-off farmers. The study indicates that the impact of micro-irrigation systems on the sustainability of groundwater resources depends upon the magnitude of the overall productivity gain following the shift from traditional irrigation method to micro-irrigation system, the pattern of use of the saved water, and the type and potential number of adopters.