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Dynamics of Irrigated Rice Farming in Mali, The

L Kater, I Dembélé, I Dicko

Discussion paper, 25 pages

The Office of Niger (ON) in Mali is one of the largest irrigation schemes in Sub-Saharan Africa and has provided a much improved source of income for rice farmers. Production in the ON has recently diversified, and farmers have started supplementing their income by growing vegetables on the rice fields in the dry season. The scheme is currently being expanded, which should improve rural people’s livelihoods. However, this could have negative environmental consequences, as it will reduce the available dryland grazing areas and woodlands and increase pressure on the remaining resources, which may lead to conflict over their use. Some of the pressure on resources could be reduced if the rice farmers changed their livestock management practices, and tried to integrate their livestock and cropping systems better.

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