Connecting GIS and Agriculture Water Management for Better Agriculture Strategic Planning

Connecting GIS and Agriculture Water Management for Better Agriculture Strategic Planning

 

The direction of agriculture water management in Malaysia for the coming years will be affected by many factors. Scientific understanding of GIS’ advantages for professionals needs to be realized and supported for better agriculture water management in Malaysia.

The application of advanced functions of GIS in replacing manual methods in managing water for agriculture helps to provide a holistic approach and methodology in addressing assorted scientific and engineering issues to be studied.

The use of the agricultural database and other dataset within a digital GIS environment provides many potential benefits to agricultural officers, land planners and engineers since users are not limited to information displayed only on a hardcopy. The agricultural digital GIS data could then be developed into numerous GIS applications which also support mobile utilisation whereby users could access these GIS functions either through locally-stored data or Web-based mapping systems including online map sites.

An example of the enhancement of agriculture water management outputs with geoinformation technologies relates to activities such as analysing rainfall, floods and irrigation water demands,  proposing irrigation schemes, designing drainage system and mitigation measures.

The biggest advantage of GIS for agriculture water management can be classified into two main applications: (i) Mobile GIS and (ii) Desktop GIS. These applications could then be utilized for agriculture strategic planning for water management in relation to irrigation schemes, fertility management, nursery practice, asset management, planning of good agricultural practices and assessing the downstream industries.

Interactive and efficient geospatial platforms for agriculture water management can and should be developed in an integrated way to further assist decision makers from various agencies and as preparation for future agriculture production demands in Malaysia.