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|Title:||Contribution to the salinization risk assessment, under drought conditions, in the Alqueva irrigation area (South Portugal)|
Costa, Maria João
|Abstract:||In Mediterranean regions, climate changes have enlarged water limitation for crops, leading to an increased demand for irrigation water. During the hydrological years of 2016 and 2017, Portugal experienced a drought season that has extended throughout almost the entire mainland territory reaching a severe drought level. Under water scarcity conditions and high atmosphere evaporative demand, the risk of land salinization is one of the major threats to the sustainability of irrigated agriculture. Therefore, it is very important to assess the quality of irrigation water and the risks of salinity for crop production, in order to adopt appropriate management practices in irrigated areas. This study is focused on the salinity risks for the production of the most representative crops grown in the Alqueva irrigation area. This is a large irrigation scheme with a total area of 120 000 ha centered in the Alqueva reservoir. For the purpose of the study, a chemical assessment of some major inorganic ions (Na+, Ca2+, Mg2+, K+, SO42- and Cl-), pH and electric conductivity (ECW), was conducted throughout 2017, on water samples collected on four platforms sited in the reservoir. Water quality for irrigation was evaluated considering both the Portuguese regulations and the FAO guidelines. Sodium adsorption ratio (SAR) and soil salinity (ECe) were estimated, in order to assess potential sodium-related soil permeability and crusting problems, as well as, potential yield reductions in the most significant crops of the Alqueva perimeter. Higher ion concentrations and water salinity were quantified with the increase of atmosphere evaporative demand. Sodium hazard assessment showed slight to moderate risk of reduced infiltration rates, a result that should be taken into account when surface or sprinkler irrigation systems are used. Furthermore, relative yield reductions may be mainly found in horticultural crops, classified as moderately sensitive to sensitive in the salt tolerance scale.|
|Appears in Collections:||D-BIO - Posters|
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