Thirty agricultural and environmental researchers, officials, producers and consultants met at the Department of Agriculture’s District Office in Limassol to get introduced to ENORASIS, a smart irrigation decision support system, on 24 June 2014. The ENORASIS system has been developed by a group of European researchers and is funded by the European Commission.
Mr. Christos Hadjiantos from the Land and Water Use section of the Ministry of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environment explained that the irrigation water management in Cyprus is high compared to other countries of the Eastern Mediterranean region. However, he stressed the need for farmers to employ more efficient and technologically advanced systems, considering the water scarcity issues that the country is facing.
Marinos Eliades from The Cyprus Institute explained how ENORASIS uses wireless soil moisture sensors and a small weather station to compute irrigation water needs. All measurements are sent hourly through the mobile telephone network. All data are displayed in a Web App and irrigation advice is provided daily through the Web or Mobile App. A 3-day high resolution weather forecast is integrated in the irrigation advice.
The proposed increases in irrigation water prices, as required by the European Water Framework Directive were also discussed. Smart irrigation systems such as the ENORASIS platform can contribute to water savings, which could reduce agricultural input costs.
After the presentations and discussions, the group was invited to see the ENORASIS system in a citrus orchard of the Phassouri Plantations Co in Akrotiri. Mr. Nicolas Zenonis from Phassouri Plantations explained how the ENORASIS system is helping them to optimize their irrigation water use.
The workshop was organized by the Energy, Environment and Water Research Center of The Cyprus Institute together with the Department of Agriculture of the Ministry of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environment. Special thanks are due to Ms. Margarita Hadjipieri and Christina Triantafillidou from the Department of Agriculture, Limassol District Office and Mr. Christos Tsimon from the Phassouri Plantations Co. for hosting the meeting.
Dr. Adrianna Bruggeman
Tel. +357 22 208 620