The EU funded “Water and Environment Support (WES) in the ENI Neighbourhood South Region”, has organised a Regional Training and Study Tour focusing on optimal irrigation management and practices, for five days, from the 12th till the 16th of June 2023, in Bari, Italy.

The purpose of this Training was to build the capacity of the WES Partner countries (PCs) on using appropriate irrigation methods for improved irrigation efficiency and water productivity.

More than 25 stakeholders, such as technical directors, engineers and experts coming from Ministries of Water Resources & Irrigation, Agriculture & Rural Development Government, Water and Irrigation Agencies, the WES Water Demo Projects and NGOs visited the International Centre for Advanced Mediterranean Agronomic Studies (CIHEAM) Bari,  the Capitanata irrigation consortium and the Gallipoli tertiary treatment plant, where they participated in on-site and on-field trainings.

The team of WES water experts presented the range of irrigations methods, that can be fully designed and implemented in the WES Partner Countries in the MENA region.

Here are the main topics presented and fully discussed during the Training and Study Tour:

On-farm irrigation management; Design and performance analysis of large-scale pressurized irrigation systems using decision support systems; Digital smart (remote-controlled) irrigation system to address water scarcity and promote preservation of available freshwater resources; Innovative solutions towards an enhanced on-farm management such as the use of solar energy (agrivoltaic) for sustainable agriculture; Safe reuse of non-conventional water resources in agriculture; using treated wastewater reuse focusing on technical and environmental aspects; Use of rainwater harvesting.

And last but not least, the irrigation solutions tested by the WES Demo Projects in Gaza, Jordan, Lebanon and Tunisia.

Although the program of the trainees was long, the experience gained by the on-site trainings, quizzes, practical exercises and exchange of ideas on various irrigation practices was indeed valuable and promising for an optimal development of irrigation management in the MENA region.

WES Project will continue to develop its water activities in all PCs till November 2024.