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Ethiopia has 23bn m3 of underground suitable for irrigation: ATA

Addis Ababa, March 28, 2023 (FBC) – The Ethiopian Agricultural Transformation Institute (ATA) has confirmed that Ethiopia has 23 billion cubic meters of underground water resources at a depth of less than 30 meters suitable for irrigation development.

According to Mandefro Negusie, the CEO of the Institute, efforts are being made to build an agricultural sub-economy that exploits underground water besides to annual rainfall.

In addition to cultivating once a year through natural ranfall, the Official also mentioned that the country has embarked a system of cultivating up to three times a year through irrigation.

Apart from surface water, which is playing an important role in the success of the irrigation development plan, the country’s underground water capacity at a depth of less than 30 meters has been identified, he noted.

Hence, Mandefro disclosed that Ethiopia has a potential of 23 billion cubic meters of underground water that can be dug at a shallow depth.

He underscored that it is possible to cultivate up to 6 million hectares with the surface and the now uncovered shallow groundwater.

The ATA CEO said that in the long term, there is a potential to cultivate up to 11 million hectares by using the country’s water resources properly.

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