Optimization of cropping pattern, taking into account limited water resources, cultivated area and biodiversity in the Mehran Plain

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Associate Professor, Department of Agriculture, Ilam University, Ilam, Iran.

2 M.Sc. Student, Department of Water Engineering, Faculty of agriculture, Ilam University, Ilam, Iran.


Due to limited water resources in Iran, the optimal use of water resources and improvement of water use efficiency is necessary, especially in agriculture. In current work, cropping pattern optimization was carried out in Mehran Plain of Ilam Province based on water resources, cultivated area and biodiversity constraints using genetic algorithm. The optimization model was applied to three different scenarios based on a combination of different constraints. The results showed that the cropping pattern in 2016-17 was not optimal and the biodiversity index was low. The resulting profit and biodiversity in all scenarios are higher than the current situation in Mehran plain. The amount of profit increase in combinations one, two and three is 70, 101 and 132% higher than the profit of the existing cropping pattern, respectively, and in terms of biodiversity, the Shannon-Wiener criterion is more than twice as high as the Shannon-Wiener criterion in the existing simple cropping pattern in all scenarios. Wheat, canola, sesame and okra are strongly represented in most optimal cropping patterns. Wheat has the largest acreage and tomato and alfalfa and corn have the least acreage due to the low profit and high water consumption of these products. Crops such as corn, sesame, okra and cucumber are strongly represented in the optimal cropping patterns and can be used as alternatives to the current crops to increase agricultural profits.


Main Subjects

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