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Xinjiang Takes Comprehensive Measures to Ensure Sustainable Water Use.

Correspondent of the People’s Daily newspaper Li Yanan reports.
Water is vital for socio-economic development. It is a fundamental natural and economic resource of strategic importance. The Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region in northwest China has long faced the problem of uneven spatiotemporal distribution of water resources, experiencing acute water shortages.

In recent years, Xinjiang has been working to optimize water management, moving from a less efficient and ad hoc approach to a more nuanced and science-based one. This led to the accelerated formation of a unified, effective, systematic and scientific water resources management system. Thanks to this, Xinjiang has seen a continuous improvement in the environmental situation, the economy and society are developing better and at a faster pace, and the feelings of satisfaction, happiness and security of the residents of the autonomous region are constantly strengthening.

On March 15, 2021, the Daheyan Reservoir in the mountains north of the village of the same name in the Gaochang district of Turpan City, Xinjiang, officially began supplying water to the underlying areas. The reservoir was built to store excess water in winter and summer and supply water for irrigation in spring and winter. As a result, the reliability of water supply for irrigation increased from 75% to 90%.
Downstream from the Daheyan Reservoir is the Hongliuhe Garden Farm. Local farmer Li Xianshui said that previously, during the flowering period of grapes in May, due to the high need for irrigation, there was often not enough water, and during the abundant water period in July-August, on the contrary, there was an excess of water.

However, now the situation has changed. Before peak irrigation water consumption occurs, farmers submit water consumption plans in advance and the reservoir ensures sufficient water supply. This made it possible to significantly increase the grape yield to more than 3 tons from 1 mu /667 sq. m.

As of the end of 2022, there were 671 reservoirs in Xinjiang with a total capacity of 12.13 billion cubic meters. m. A total of 54.27 billion cubic meters were supplied through them. m of water for agricultural needs and 36.7 billion cubic meters. m to replenish the flow of reservoirs to improve their ecological condition. With the help of this, the goals of diversifying water intake methods, increasing water supply and increasing its accumulation were successfully realized. Reservoirs, through sustainable use of water resources, have played a significant role in creating social, economic and environmental benefits.
In the southern part of Korla City, Bayangol Mongolian Autonomous Region, Xinjiang, there is the Dujuan River Wetland Park, covering an area of 5,400 mu/3.6 million square meters. More than 10 thousand trees and shrubs are planted here, as well as a large number of aquatic plants, which serve as the “green lungs” of the city.
To meet the significant irrigation needs of this large-scale landscaping project, treated water is sent from a wastewater treatment plant located a few kilometers south of Korla. As a result of thorough treatment, household wastewater corresponds to the first quality category. The daily water supply to the Dujuan River Wetland Park varies from 30 thousand to 50 thousand cubic meters, which allows saving approximately from 9 million to 15 million cubic meters. m of water annually.

“Currently, 22% of water for irrigation of urban vegetation is secondary, its annual consumption is 15 million cubic meters. This not only reduces costs for urban landscaping territories, but also preserves surface and underground water resources,” said Guo Wei, deputy director of the Korla City Gardening and Greening Center.
Lake Bagrashkel in Bohu County of Xinjiang, the largest freshwater an inland lake in China once faced a number of problems such as declining water levels, severe pollution and loss of biodiversity.

According to Liu Yi, director of the Bohu County Environmental Department, significant measures have been taken to address these issues. A total of 29 direct or indirect wastewater discharges into the lake were completely eliminated. Since 2018, approximately 807 million cubic meters have been transferred to Lake Bagrashkel. m of water from the Kaidu River to improve water circulation in the lake and improve its quality.

Currently the water level in the lake is Bagrashkel has risen almost 2 m from its lowest point, reaching 1047 m. Water quality now generally meets the Class III standard in a five-stage system quality water in the country.

Following With the improvement of the ecological situation, the diversity and number of wild birds on the lake continues to increase Bagrashkel. According to observations According to researchers, 198 species of birds move through the lake during migrations, their number reaching hundreds of thousands. Bagrashkel Lake is also the largest fishing base in Xinjiang.

Through the promotion and popularization of efficient water-saving agriculture, agricultural production in Xinjiang has made a new breakthrough. This year the general summer harvest grain production in the autonomous region reached 7.01 million tons, setting a new historical record. In addition, the collection quantity and quality of various local fruits and nuts has increased.
In Naomaohu Township, Yiwu County, Hami City, Xinjiang, there are extensive plantations of the late-ripening Hami melon. “This year all the melon was sold, the average income from 1 mu / 667 square meters amounted to about 4,000 yuan (US$550), said Liang Juanying, who harvested ham melon from an area of 290 mu (193.33 thousand square meters) this year.
According to the woman, the increase in income from chami melon is due to the use of advanced cultivation technologies, including the use of underground drip irrigation.

In 2001, the village of Naomaohu began to promote underground drip irrigation technology based on the cultivation of Hami melon. Today, watering at the base can be controlled via a mobile application, which reduces water costs by 30%. Due to this, not only efficient use of water resources was achieved, but also the quality of the melon was improved.

Lop Nur County is a major cotton producer in Xinjiang. To date, effective water-saving technologies have been implemented in more than 1 million mu / 666.67 million square meters. This allows you to save on average 100 cubic meters. m of water for each mu.

In a cotton field with an area of 3000 mu/ 2 million square meters, managed by agricultural technology company XAG, 100 soil sensors operate simultaneously, automatically watering and fertilizing the field taking into account the level of soil moisture.

According to Ai Haipeng, head of the cotton field management team, compared with other conventional fields, last year’s irrigation water consumption in this field decreased by 47.3%, while the average yield per mu increased from 300 kg to more than 400 kg.

Source: “People’s Daily” online

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