Watershed management plays a key role in SCoPSA farmers
Watershed management is an important component of sustainable farming practices. This is one of the reasons that the Philippine government has included the protection and conservation of the country’s watersheds as part of its priority programs.
It is incorporated into the Integrated Watershed Management Program and the National Greening Program of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.
While watershed management is primarily associated with environmental components like reforestation, soil conservation, and the establishment of community-based forest management systems, it is also an important aspect of sustainable agriculture.
Watershed management protects and improves water quality and reduces sedimentation, erosion, and pollution. It also reduces the risk of landslides and floods as water flow is regulated.
Watershed management helps conserve biodiversity as it protects the home of many species of wildlife and plants. Sustainable development is also promoted through supporting ecotourism, forestry, and agriculture activities.
For farmers in Cagayan and Quirino, watershed management has illustrated a significant impact on farmers who utilize the Sustainable Corn Production in Sloping Areas (SCoPSA) method.
SCoPSA focuses on sustainable land use practices, such as contour farming, agroforestry, and soil conservation, which can help reduce soil erosion and improve soil fertility. These practices also help to retain moisture in the soil, which can be particularly important during periods of drought which runs parallel to the goals of watershed management.
By adopting these sustainable land use practices, farmers in Cagayan and Quirino have been able to increase their crop yields and improve the quality of their crops. In addition, the program has helped to reduce the incidence of soil erosion and landslides, which can be particularly common in sloping areas.