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    Soil conservation prioritized in Ciego de Ávila

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    With 16 demonstration polygons, distributed in its ten municipalities, the province of Ciego de Ávila works on the improvement of 300 hectares of land during the current year, as a continuation of the National Program for Soil Improvement and Conservation.

    Rafael Pérez Carmenate, territorial delegate of the Ministry of Science, Technology and Environment (CITMA), highlighted that the allocation of two thousand 500 million pesos, in 2022, to mitigate the processes of soil degradation, demonstrates the importance given to confront this problem in the country.

    The availability of human and financial resources allows studies to be carried out on the characterization and use of the land, the agro-productive categorization, the determination of limiting factors, and the definition of conservation and improvement measures in the demonstration polygons of soils, waters and forests, he added.

    Likewise, the economic, social, technological and environmental impacts are measured, achieving an integrated approach to sustainable land management.

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    The existence of organic fertilizer production centers in all municipalities is evaluated as a strength, of special interest to develop sustainable agriculture and make up for the deficit of imported inputs in a province that decides on food security by contributing to the national balance.

    During the year 2021, the budget allocated in the nation for the aforementioned program exceeded 17,200 million pesos, which implied benefits for some 16,830.50 ha of soil in Ciego de Ávila, according to the CITMA Territorial Delegation.

    Actions carried out by the Ministry of Agriculture and the Azcuba Business Group contributed to the improvement and conservation of some 42,665.22 ha for various crops and sugarcane production, which guaranteed higher yields in rice and grass crops.

    The Provincial Meteorological Center offers a compendium of thematic maps that identify the most suitable areas based on soils (agro-productive I and II), thermal conditions and the presence of sectored water to establish crops such as potatoes, pineapples, guava, sugar cane , banana, beans, rice, mango, tobacco and citrus.

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    For making sound decisions about the use of land and other natural resources, the digital platform called Spatial Data Infrastructure (IDEVIDA) is available, which provides elements to ensure sustainable development.

    With intervention sites in the municipalities of Florencia and Chambas, the international project Connecting Landscapes is also projected in favor of soil protection by drawing up management plans for the connectivity zones belonging to the Bamburanao Special Region for Sustainable Development.

    In Rincón de Mabuya, a Chambero settlement with a dispersed population and agricultural production as a fundamental economic activity, actions are suggested to improve connectivity within the area to improve soil conditions and water availability.

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    The proposals are based on the use of agro-ecological practices that favor the inhabitants of the place and the connection of the landscape, so that the natural processes themselves contribute to the distribution of the species, through animals, wind or water.

    Freddy Morales Ruitiña, technical coordinator of Connecting Landscapes, emphasized that it is necessary to promote silvopastoralism, through the use of live fences with native species that protect the soil and favor the growth of grasses by regulating the temperature and humidity in the area.