Jakarta, CNBC Indonesia – The Ministry of Agriculture (Kementan) revealed that the risk of drying of rice fields due to the El Nino phenomenon in July-September 2023 is mostly in the low category. At the same time, the Ministry of Agriculture claims that there are no rice fields that have a high or very high potential for experiencing drought.
This was conveyed by the Marketing and Investment Coordinator of the Directorate of Food Crop Processing and Marketing (PPHTP) of the Ministry of Agriculture, Indah Sulistyo Rini, during the 2023 Inflation Control Coordination Meeting, Monday (11/9/2023).
“For the period July-September 2023, the broad prediction of drought risk for wetland rice commodities in Indonesia is in the low-medium category,” he said.
“Nationally moderate category drought predictions in July are 253,559 hectares (ha) or 3.35% of the total risk of drought. In August there are 268,123 ha, or 3.41% of the total risk of drought. And, in September there are 96,128 ha , or 1.27% of the risk of drought,” explained Indah.
The Ministry of Agriculture, he continued, has made efforts to anticipate the impact of El Nino on the agricultural sector.
“Efforts to anticipate El Nino begin with mapping the locations affected by drought and grouping them into red, yellow and green areas,” he said.
“Then accelerate planting to catch up with remaining rain and increase the availability of agricultural equipment and machinery to accelerate planting,” he added.
Apart from that, he said, the Ministry of Agriculture is increasing the availability of water by building reservoirs and rehabilitating tertiary irrigation networks, as well as pumping. Also provided are drought and OPT (pest) resistant seeds, a 1,000 ha program per district for adaptation and mitigation of the impact of El Nino.
Then the National El Nino Movement increased planting by 500,000 ha in 10 provinces and 100 districts, developed centralized and independent organic fertilizer, supported KUR financing and agricultural insurance, as well as preparing food barns at the village level.
“We are coordinating with banks for the distribution of KUR and disbursement of insurance, especially for rice and corn commodities. Because usually banks in drought situations like this are quite careful in distributing KUR,” he said.
“In fact, because the APBN is limited, we are intensifying banking support efforts so that we don’t hesitate to distribute KUR and insurance in the second semester,” said Indah.
The following are the target areas for the Ministry of Agriculture’s Gernas program to overcome the impact of El Nino:
6 main provinces, namely:
– North Sumatra: 13 districts, 45,000 ha
– South Sumatra: 10 districts, 74,500 ha
– West Java: 6 districts. 39,500 ha
– East Java: 14 districts, 59,000 ha
– Central Java: 22 districts, 86,000 ha
– South Sulawesi: 11 districts, 81,000 ha.
4 supporting provinces, namely:
– Lampung: 6 districts, 36,000 ha
– Banten: 4 districts, 16,000 ha
– South Kalimantan: 9 districts, 51,000 ha
– NTB: 5 districts, 12,000 ha.
As is known, El Nino is a climate phenomenon that can trigger an anomalous increase in temperature, thereby triggering drought and heat during the dry season which is more extreme than the usual dry season. BMKG predicts, El Nino will remain at a moderate level until December 2023-January-February 20234. At the same time, the positive Indian Ocean Dipole (IOD) is expected to persist until the end of 2023.
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