Tainan experimental rice farm reduces water use by 34% and electricity use by 1,111 kWh per hectare by paper film transplanting and alternate wetting and drying irrigation

March 18, 2024 |

Tainan District Agricultural Research and Extension Station (Tainan DARES) introduces innovative alternate wet-dry (AWD) irrigation cultivation methods for rice paddies, aiming to combat climate change and reduce carbon emissions in agriculture. By combining this approach with biodegradable rice paper-mulch transplanting technology, they address methane emissions caused by traditional flooded rice fields while conserving water and minimizing weed growth.

Traditional organic rice farming, reliant on manual weeding due to herbicide restrictions, often leads to methane emissions from flooded fields. Tainan DARES's alternate wet-dry irrigation model reduces these emissions by 32.5% and irrigation water usage by 21% per hectare, as per the DNDC model.

The integration of paper-mulch transplanting complements this strategy, significantly reducing weed proliferation and labor requirements while conserving water. The biodegradable mulch decomposes within 40-50 days, ensuring no adverse effects on subsequent planting cycles. Tainan DARES underscores its dedication to innovation and sustainability, aiming to enhance agricultural efficiency while mitigating environmental impact.