In the Philippines, agricultural development on sloping lands is intensifying in response to a growing population and the need to diversify food and income streams. However, sloping lands are vulnerable to erosion and degradation of watershed function. Land-use planning is therefore critical to ensure that these slopes can provide vital economic benefits as well as ecological services.
|Upland watershed in southern Philippines - Farming needs to balance |
intensifying crop production with preserving watershed function
The ACIAR project Watershed evaluation for sustainable use of sloping agricultural land in the southern Philippines is working in the Cabulig and Inabanga watersheds. Its aim is to help farmers plan how to use their land most effectively: choosing the most suitable crops while maintaining the land’s structural integrity to avoid landslides and other negative impacts. Work is focused on developing digital techniques to assess the land’s resources and limitations, and providing information in a form that farmers can readily use.
|Training local staff on soil sampling method|
To help train field staff effectively, the project team has produced a short video showing the basic routine for soil sampling. The video is shown to all new staff before they start field work, and given to in-country partners.
|Scenes from the instructional video|
|Chocolate Hills on Bohol Island|
By Jack Koci, ACIAR Graduate Officer
ACIAR project SMCN/2009/031 Watershed evaluation for sustainable use of sloping agricultural land in the southern Philippines
CSIRO blog from project leader Dr Anthony Ringrose-Voase
Philippines research strategy