Managing Salinity in Iraq's Agriculture: Current State, Causes, and Impacts
This report is the first in a series of publications that comprise the Iraq Salinity Assessment. This report documents the current state, causes, impacts of salinity in central and southern Iraq. Other reports in the Assessment propose solutions and investment options to manage and remediate salinity in Iraq. The Iraq Salinity Assessment synthesizes the results or the Iraq Salinity Project, a research partnership between five Iraqi ministries and national agencies and an international team of researchers, led by ICARDA, specialized in land and water management, crop improvement and plant breeding, and socioeconomics. This research builds on previous work and technical studies done in Iraq and on the expertise of Iraqi agencies working to promote agricultural development over the past decades. It provides analysis of historical data and new data compiled in the Iraq Salinity Project and provides an insight into the extent and severity of soil and water salinity in Iraq. The Assessment benefits from Australia’s experience in dealing with similar salinity problems in its agricultural sector. The salinity situation and agro-hydrological problems faced by Iraq are similar to those faced in Australia’s Murray-Darling river basin. Australia has tackled its salinity problem in a systematic way since the 1980s, and today salinity is being controlled and reversed in many areas. This report is a synthesis and analysis of a body of research - field-level and technical studies in North and Central Iraq, a new body of data and information collected and compiled by the research team and a series of technical and background papers.
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