Fields of Rice
As per the inventory made by the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF), rice contributes almost 23 per cent of total emissions from agriculture. Recent research, using better characterisation of agro-ecosystem properties, indicates that this fraction could perhaps be even lower, although a significant proportion of emission is inevitable from rice fields which remain flooded. There is however scope of reducing emissions from irrigated rice fields by mid-season drainage or alternate drying instead of continuous flooding, use of nitrification inhibitors, such as neem coated urea, and fertiliser placement practices. To produce, one kilogram of rice about 3000 litres of water is required. India, with only 4.2 per cent water and 17 per cent of the population of the world urgently needs to opt for intermittent drying and wetting to achieve similar yields.