An on-farm water storage (OFWS) pond is a structural best management practice that enables to capture and store canal water, surface water runoff during the rainy season, tailwater from furrow irrigation etc. so that it may be used subsequently at critical time of irrigation. These systems may be constructed with a water storage pond and an enlarged tailwater recovery ditch (TWRD). The ponds are constructed at the locations where canal water can be collected and stored under gravity and adequate runoff can be accessible for the fields that will be irrigated using the stored water. The design of a pond can vary with location and topography of the farm.
The purpose of providing water storage ponds includes the followings:
- Store water during rainy season and times of no use in the commands of perennial/ non-perennial canals for subsequent irrigations at the critical crop growth stages.
- Provide flexibility for storage of plentiful canal and rainfall runoff water for its more expedient use subsequently
- Collect, store and filter water from:
- Small dams, springs, streams, nallas etc.
- Rainfall runoff over agricultural catchment during rainy season
- Tubewells and dugwells of low flows
- Tailwaters from agricultural fields
- Regulate the flows so that it can be used efficiently when needed in large flow rates
- More localized water buffering source
- Virgin lands can be brought under irrigation
- Enable to peak water demands during dry periods
- Ensures lifesaving source for uninterrupted physiological activities of the crops
- Smooth out variations in water supplies to provide water security at farm
- Cropping intensity might be increased by 100%
- Enables to grow water sensitive crops sustainably
- Reduce energy use against groundwater pumping
- Control land degradation caused by the peak flows over agricultural catchment
- Reduces vulnerability to drought and seasonal variations in rainfall
- Improve water quality of saline groundwater
- Farm income is increased substantially