Next Article in Journal
Performance Assessment of Spatial Interpolation of Precipitation for Hydrological Process Simulation in the Three Gorges Basin
Next Article in Special Issue
Trading Natural Riparian Forests for Urban Shelterbelt Plantations—A Sustainability Assessment of the Kökyar Protection Forest in NW China
Previous Article in Journal
Enhancing the Economic Value of Large Investments in Sustainable Drainage Systems (SuDS) through Inclusion of Ecosystems Services Benefits
Previous Article in Special Issue
Essentials of Endorheic Basins and Lakes: A Review in the Context of Current and Future Water Resource Management and Mitigation Activities in Central Asia
Article Menu
Issue 11 (November) cover image

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Water 2017, 9(11), 842; https://doi.org/10.3390/w9110842

Tree Shelterbelts as an Element to Improve Water Resource Management in Central Asia

1
World Agroforestry Center, Central Asia Office, Bishkek 720001, Kyrgyzstan
2
Faculty Regional and Environmental Sciences, University of Trier, 54286 Trier, Germany
3
Faculty of Social and Poöitical Sciences, German Kazakh University, Almaty 050010, Kazakhstan
4
Department of Biodiversity and Bioresources, Faculty of Biology and Biotechnology, al Farabi Kazakh National University, Almaty 050040, Kazakhstan
5
Key Laboratory of Economic Plants and Biotechnology, Kunming Institute of Botany, Kunming 650201, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 24 August 2017 / Revised: 15 October 2017 / Accepted: 20 October 2017 / Published: 31 October 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Future of Water Management in Central Asia)
Full-Text   |   PDF [3482 KB, uploaded 31 October 2017]   |  

Abstract

In Central Asia, agriculture, notably irrigated agriculture, is the largest water consumer. Currently, flood and furrow irrigation are the dominant irrigation methods in Central Asia, in particular in the post-Soviet countries. Against the background of current and increasing competition for water—e.g., through reduced river runoffs in the course of climate change—water consumption of agriculture needs to be reduced. On the field plot level, improved irrigation technologies, like drip irrigation or plastic mulch, can reduce water consumption substantially. Alternatively, tree lines as wind breaks (shelterbelts) also can reduce crop water consumption, as shown by research from many drylands around the world. As previous research has concentrated on crop water consumption and not on tree water consumption, this paper brings the two together, in order to approach a more holistic picture, in how far shelterbelt systems, including the trees, may have the potential to save water or not. Crop water consumption was assessed through the Penman–Monteith approach for corn, wheat, potato, barley, and pear under open field conditions and under an assumed influence of a tree shelterbelt. Tree water consumption was investigated through sap flow measurements. Crop water consumption was reduced by 10–12% under influence of a shelterbelt compared to open field conditions. When water consumption of shelterbelts was added, a slight reduction of water consumption of the whole crop-shelterbelt system was found for corn, potato, and pear under the assumption 25 ha (500 × 500 m) field sizes. Under an assumption of 4 ha (200 × 200 m) field size, water consumption of the whole crop-shelterbelt system was higher for all crops investigated except for pear. The results suggest that shelterbelts may play a role in improving water resource management in Central Asia in the context of water demanding crops, like corn or cotton. In further research, other effects of shelterbelts, like increased crop yields and additional income from trees, need to be investigated. View Full-Text
Keywords: agroforestry; poplar; sap flow; evapo-transpiration; irrigated agriculture; Kyrgyzstan; Kazakhstan agroforestry; poplar; sap flow; evapo-transpiration; irrigated agriculture; Kyrgyzstan; Kazakhstan
Figures

Figure 1

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
SciFeed

Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Thevs, N.; Strenge, E.; Aliev, K.; Eraaliev, M.; Lang, P.; Baibagysov, A.; Xu, J. Tree Shelterbelts as an Element to Improve Water Resource Management in Central Asia. Water 2017, 9, 842.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics

1

Comments

[Return to top]
Water EISSN 2073-4441 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top