A key objective of the Federal Government of Nigeria (as stated in the 2013 Budget Speech of the Nigerian President to the National Assembly), is to improve and enhance dry-season agricultural productivity. Achieving this will require both; the use of integrated agricultural water management (AWM) solutions, and relevant institutional arrangements to improve farmers’ access to complementary inputs and markets.
The severe flooding on the Benue and Niger rivers that took place in Nigeria in September 2012, while unfortunate, provides an opportunity to explore options for flood-recession agriculture to complement dry-season farming, minimize the likely negative impacts of future flood events and build the resilience of Nigerian agriculture to climate change.
The Turning tragedy into opportunity: Water management solutions for flood-recession and dry-season agriculture in Nigeria project has emerged from discussions held between the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development of Nigeria and the International Water Management Institute (IWMI). Both of these parties are keen to explore opportunities in Nigeria to simultaneously:
- reduce the risks posed by flooding through accurate forecasting systems and mitigation plans, including putting flood water into productive agricultural use;
- improve and enhance dry-season farming through integrated AWM solutions, helping to increase the country’s agricultural output and food security.
Flood inundation mapping along the Benue River (Nigeria) using MODIS and Landsat Satellite images (IWMI)