Irrigation Potential Created and Irrigation Potential Utilized

There is a huge difference between irrigation potential created and utilized. Irrigation potential created is the total area which can be irrigated from a project on its full utilization. This implies that before an area is to be reported under “potential created”, it is to be ensured that:

  • Water is available for the area to be irrigated in each season during a complete irrigation year
  • Conveyance system is available to carry water up to where it is needed
  • The projected cropping pattern of the region is satisfactorily adhered to.

This implies that Irrigated Potential Created denotes full utilization. If the area actually irrigated is smaller than the potential created, it denotes under-utilization. Thus, irrigation utilization is percentage of actual irrigated area to potential created.

We note here that the Irrigation potential ‘created’ figures are generally inflated figures and they are declared without paying attention to construction of proper construction network.  Sometimes, even if water is available, it cannot be taken to the farm where it is actually needed; but potential created is shown in papers.

Thus, while the irrigated area created is merely a notional figure. The irrigation potential utilized is gross cultivable area actually irrigated during 1993-94 out of the gross proposed area to be irrigated by the scheme during the year.

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