The integrated use of breathable sand and IDer honeycomb harvesting, which is championed by Dake Rechsand in the Middle East, has transformed a barren mountain in Fuyang district of eastern Zhejiang province. China, into a lush paddy field that characterizes low input agriculture, emissions reduction, fertilizer conservation, water retention and high yield.
Dake Rechsand, a Dubai-based company providing sustainable solutions in water conservation and desert agriculture, has unveiled a success story that illustrates an ideal integrated use of its Breathable Sand water harvesting technologies and Honeycomb IDer. This unique combination, combined with intelligent sensor-based irrigation systems, has transformed a barren “unproductive” mountain in Fuyang District of eastern China’s Zhejiang Province into a high-yielding paddy field.
Known locally as the “ecological sponge rice fields”, the mountains are redefining the possibilities of desert agriculture. Previously considered non-arable and unsuitable for agriculture, arid mountains were subject to technological application at several levels. The floor has been improved with Breathable Sand medium, inducing air permeability and water retention (anti-infiltration) properties. Typically, this action allows crops to retain water for long periods of time after a single irrigation, resulting in a total reduction in water consumption of 80% compared to conventional agriculture.
Second, excessive irrigation runoff and rainwater is captured by IDer honeycomb water collection systems, which perform filtration and store potable water in underground reservoirs. Through efficient redirection mechanisms, stored water is reused for irrigation, creating “circularity” in farming systems. In addition, the rice fields are equipped with intelligent irrigation monitoring sensors, which allow operators to automate several functions and further optimize the use of resources.
“Ecological sponge rice fields challenge conventional notions of the ‘arability’ of land. The arid mountains, originally considered unproductive, are now teeming with life, with golden rice terraces. But their aesthetic appeal is only part of the story; their real value lies in significantly lower resource use, high efficiency and total ecological improvement, ”said Chandra Dake, CEO and Founder of Dake Rechsand.
“The integrated use of Dake Rechsand’s proprietary solutions and its feasibility with smart sensors has led to an exemplary prototype in Fuyang District of China, inspiring a generation of sustainability-focused farmers and entrepreneurs around the world. . This development is consistent with the growing emphasis on sustainable agriculture and climate action, on which the recently concluded COP26 is based and the growing net zero commitments. To that end, the mere existence of barren mountains turned into rice paddies is a beacon of hope – for the carbon-intensive agricultural sector and the water-stressed MENA region, ”said Chandra Dake.
The multiple value of breathable sand and IDer crop can be summarized as follows:
Water saving: The anti-seepage and water retention property of Breathable Sand minimizes the need for irrigation, enabling agricultural activities in water stressed regions like the MENA region.
Reducing Emissions: The agricultural sector is one of the main causes of climate change due to its intrinsic and operational carbon footprint. Technology-driven optimization and efficiency improvements help farmers control their emissions.
Fertilizer Preservation: Anti-seepage properties also help the soil environment preserve fertilizer, thus mitigating leakage and non-point source pollution (NPS).
High Yield: The breathable sand air permeability function enables efficient supply of nutrients to the roots, leading to high yield and the possibility of growing a wide variety of crops.
Ecological Improvement: The integrated application of Breathable Sand Harvest and IDer is a tried and tested method to achieve land remediation and induce ecological balance.