Erratic rains always create uncertainty for farming in the district. It also causes soil erosion leading to depletion of fertile layer of agriculture fields and degradation of range lands. Nutritional depletion due to over exploitation and irregular crop rotation is another issue leading to reduced production with passage of time. Due to low land holding (continuous fragmentation of land) people are shifting to other livelihoods strategies. Drought is a permanent issue regarding farming in Haripur. There are many rain fed areas where if there is no or low rain fall, no crop is grown. Besides, in peripheral areas farmers have little access to irrigation, soil conservation, agriculture and livestock services.
(Sources: Primary data from farmers)
There is a great potential of bringing cultivable wastes under cultivation through rain water harvesting and soil conservation measurements. Besides, if water available for irrigation, off and on season vegetable, kitchen gardens and fruit orchards could be grown anywhere in the district. Furthermore plains of the district are the most suitable area for seed production.
(Sources: Agriculture research station Haripur and Primary data from farmers)
Rivers and Streams
Four well known rives of the province i.e. Indus, Siran, Daur and Haro flow through the district. Besides, there are many small streams and springs in hilly areas falling into these main streams and rivers.
River Indus enters the district at Durband in the north- west, flowing along the western boundary of Haripur, feeds Turbela reservoir, and exits the district at Ghazi. It gives no water for irrigation to the district, while some nearby villages collect water from it for domestic uses and livestock.
Siran River enters Haripur at Bir, flows through the UC from north east to west and falls into Turbela Lake near Bir village. Channels from the river irrigate a small piece of land at Bir, while people also get water from the river for HH use, in the nearby villages.
The Daur River has less water and comparatively shorter course than Siran. It has its catchment area at Daunga Gali of district Abbottabad in the east, fed by many springs and streams at different places i.e. Main Katha, Bagh, Gaya, Namli Maria, Baghnotar, and Thallian. It flows through the plains of the district towards west, joining Siran near Gandger range about eight km above Turbela. The river is a great source of irrigation and sanitation / drainage in the district.
One of the eastern tributaries of Haro at Muslim Abad The Haro River with adequate water originates from the southern end of Daunga Gali range where it has two tributaries, the eastern known as Dhund and the western is called Karral Haro. The two streams join at the head of Khanpur tract that ultimately falls into Khanpur dam. It irrigates lands in some villages upstream i.e. in Khanpur area. (Sources: Census 1998, Irrigation Sub Division Haripur, and Primary data from filed) Dams and Canals
Turbela reservoir between Bir and Bait Gali One of the worlds’ biggest dams viz. Turbela reservoir is situated in the Haripur. Besides there are other big and small dams i.e. Khanpur Dam, Bhutri Dam, Khal Dam, Mang Dam and Slam Khund dam. As Turbela dam doesn’t give any irrigation water to the district it greatly helps to maintain water table in the side by areas of the district. Other dams not only feed several canals and irrigation channels but also recharge the underground water table in the area. Major canals in the district are Ichar, Punjkatha, Sarai Saleh, Rangeela, Changi Bandi, Shanda Maira, Mankarai, Neelan and Amgah. Rangeela Irrigation System is taken off form Daur and comprises a comprehensive system of Distribution tanks further distributed in nine civil channels. (Sources: Census 1998, Irrigation Sub Division Haripur, and Primary data from filed)
Irrigation and Drinking Water Tube Wells / Wells
There are 35 irrigation and 210 drinking water tube wells mostly in plain areas of the district. Irrigation tube wells are managed by Irrigation department while those of drinking water are managed by public health engineering. In Municipalities i.e. Haripur and Kalabat drinking water tube wells are managed (maintenance & operation) by municipal committees. Average bill for irrigation tube well is PKR. 600-700/hour and that for drinking water supply is PKR. 200/month. Average water table in the district ranges from 70-180 ft but in some areas i.e. in the city and other dry areas in the south east it goes down from 200-300 ft. (Sources: Irrigation Division Hazara, Public Health Engineering Haripur, and Primary data from filed)
Total Irrigated Area (Acre)
The district is mostly un-irrigated and only 61,430.03 acre (13.35% of the total area and 36% of the total cultivated land) is irrigated through different sources i.e. canals, tanks, tube wells, wells and civil irrigation channels. An approximate ratio of irrigation from different sources is as following.
(Sources: Crops reporting services, Irrigation Sub Division Haripur, and Primary data from filed)
75% HHs get drinking water from tube wells and 25% from gravity supply, hand pumps and dug wells. In some big villages there are mega water supply schemes for drinking water i.e. Sirikot and Garam Thon etc. In rain fed areas there are rain water harvesting ponds mostly used for livestock. Though water table in the area has been raised by the dames, yet drought is a permanent threat to the surface water as well as underground water i.e. due to drought in 2001-2002 most of the tube wells got dried.
Rain water harvesting pond at Sarai Niamat Khan Soil Erosion
Soil erosion is mostly due to erratic rains, gullies at hills, and flood in river and rain fed / perennial streams. There is perpetual soil erosion on banks of the Siran River. Soil conservation has very meager financial resources and just provide subsidy to individuals for reclaiming or protection of lands on small scale. It works on request from individuals and with a cost sharing approach that ranges from 20% - 50% of total cost. Work done by the Soil Conservation department for water harvesting and soil conservation in the years 2009-2013 is summarized as following;
Union Council Wise Number of Schemes of Soil Conservation Department (2009-2013)
Besides, Soil conservation department worked in collaboration with IC under Livelihoods and INRM Projects, and constructed 8 Gabion spurs & 3 protection wall in Pakshahi area Muslim Abad UC, 1 Gabion protection wall in Alluli & 1 Rain water harvesting pond in Kag of UC Jatipind, and 1 Rain water harvesting pond in Goraki of Bir UC. (Sources: Soil Conservation Haripur and Primary data from filed)