Abstract

In this paper, an optimization model is formulated and optimal cropping pattern is suggested. Conjunctive use of water is not feasible for the study area as groundwater is the only source to fulfil irrigation demand. Water resources for the study area are limited. Best utilization of available water resources for increased net benefits is always advisable. Sinnar Taluka of Nasik district of Maharashtra state in India is considered as a study area. An existing cropping pattern is studied extensively and a new cropping pattern is suggested. Teaching–learning-based algorithm (TLBO) and particle swarm optimization (PSO) algorithm are applied to solve the optimization model. TLBO algorithm provides higher net returns as compared to PSO algorithm. TLBO and PSO saves up to 16.52% of water and benefits are increased by 35.81%. The study area is overexploited, this is fact. The new cropping pattern is suggested by considering minimum rainfall, i.e., 400 mm, so that in years when rainfall is above minimum rainfall the groundwater levels will be raised. In the proposed cropping pattern a few crop areas are majorly increased and a few crop areas are majorly reduced. The remaining crop areas are minorly increased or reduced and net benefits are increased and water demand decreased.

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